Asia

Chinese official urges more contacts with Taiwan politicians

  • Lei Jun, founder of China's mobile company Xiaomi and delegate to the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), center, speaks to journalists after attending the opening session of the CPPCC at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Friday, March 3, 2017. Thousands of delegates have gathered at the Chinese capital for the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

    Lei Jun, founder of China's mobile company Xiaomi and delegate to the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), center, speaks to journalists after attending the opening session of the CPPCC at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Friday, March 3, 2017. Thousands of delegates have gathered at the Chinese capital for the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)  (The Associated Press)

  • Bus ushers take a selfie in front of the Great Hall of the People during the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in Beijing, Friday, March 3, 2017. Thousands of delegates have gathered at the Chinese capital for the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

    Bus ushers take a selfie in front of the Great Hall of the People during the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in Beijing, Friday, March 3, 2017. Thousands of delegates have gathered at the Chinese capital for the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)  (The Associated Press)

  • Bus ushers try to take selfies with a Chinese paramilitary policeman stands on duty during the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Friday, March 3, 2017. Thousands of delegates have gathered at the Chinese capital for the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

    Bus ushers try to take selfies with a Chinese paramilitary policeman stands on duty during the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Friday, March 3, 2017. Thousands of delegates have gathered at the Chinese capital for the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)  (The Associated Press)

A top Chinese official is calling for more contacts between politicians in mainland China and Taiwan amid ongoing tensions between the sides.

The head of China's legislative advisory body, Yu Zhengsheng, said Friday that China continues its firm opposition to Taiwan's formal independence and insistence that its leaders accept that the self-governing island is part of China.

Yu said members of his body should increase contacts with elected officials in Taiwan and with ordinary people.

Yu made the remarks in an address at the opening of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, which advises the rubberstamp parliament, whose annual session begins Sunday.

China cut off contacts with Taiwan's government following the inauguration last May of Taiwan's independence leading President Tsai Ing-wen.