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Taiwan youth delegation visited Shaanxi province
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Taiwan youth delegation visited Shaanxi province

Ma Ying-jeou, former chairman of the Chinese Kuomintang party, underscored the importance of preserving ancient texts and cultural relics in inheriting Chinese culture, as he and members of a Taiwan youth delegation concluded their four-day visit to Shaanxi province on Apr. 7.

The youth delegation, which is visiting the Chinese mainland, arrived in Guangdong province on April 1.

During their trip to Shaanxi, which is known for its rich cultural heritage, they attended a ceremony to pay tribute to Emperor Huangdi, also known as the Yellow Emperor, the legendary common ancestor of all Chinese people.

Ma and members of the delegation also toured significant cultural sites, including the Xi'an branch of the China National Archives of Publications and Culture, the Emperor Qinshihuang's Mausoleum Site Museum and the Shaanxi History Museum.

After visiting the Shaanxi History Museum, Ma said they were delighted to see the splendid collection of cultural relics that offer a glimpse into the 5,000-year-old Chinese civilization.

The visit has been an enriching experience for the young people from Taiwan, he said, adding that witnessing the depth and continuity of Chinese culture in Shaanxi would profoundly affect their future.

"The Chinese civilization is the only ancient civilization in the world that has not been interrupted," Ma said. "The texts that have been passed down for thousands of years can still be read by us, the descendants of Emperor Yandi and Emperor Huangdi. It's truly marvelous."

Efforts to preserve historical texts and cultural relics are a "common task" for people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, Ma said. "That is the shared experience of people from both sides of the Strait and showcases the importance of cultural exchanges."

Liu Ping-jui, head of the youth delegation, said he found the Terracotta Warriors at the Emperor Qinshihuang's Mausoleum Site Museum awe-inspiring, adding that visitors, after taking a tour of the museum, can imagine how mighty the emperor's army was.

"As descendants of Emperor Yandi and Emperor Huangdi, we are deeply moved by these artifacts. We are touched by the wisdom that has been passed down by our ancestors, who left for us such profound cultural heritage," Liu said.

During their visit to the Xi'an branch of the China National Archives of Publications and Culture on Saturday, Ma and members of the youth delegation explored the world's first encyclopedia, the Yongle Dadian, which was completed in 1408 after being commissioned in 1403 by Emperor Yongle of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

When Ma read Shi Liu Qiu Lu, or Records of the Imperial Title-Conferring Envoys to Liuqiu, written in 1534 by Chen Kan, an imperial title-conferring envoy from the Ming court, he said, "(This ancient text) has proved that the Diaoyu Islands do not belong to Liuqiu."

They explored other cultural relics including the Siku Quanshu,  or Complete Library in Four Branches of Literature.

Wan Bing-han, a member of the delegation, said he was particularly impressed by the Siku Quanshu, which is displayed at the hall of the archives, and called the collection "a spectacular sight".

The delegation also visited an exhibition on the Silk Road, the ancient city wall of Xi'an and other historical sites.

"I was deeply touched. We have seen exhibitions tracing the cultural journey from the Tang Dynasty to the present, and understood the significance of the Silk Road and economic development," Wan said.

Hsu Chia-yun, another delegation member, said she found the ancient city wall particularly intriguing. She said it felt like she had traveled back in time when she saw the entire moat from the top of the wall.

On Apr. 7, Ma and the Taiwan youth delegation arrived in Beijing by high-speed train and visited the National Centre for the Performing Arts.

On Apr. 8, they are scheduled to visit the Museum of the War of the Chinese People's Resistance Against Japanese Aggression as well as the Palace Museum. Yetao

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