【2021 AIDA世錦賽 台灣參賽選手】
黃華揚 Huang Hua Yang
張逸先 Afa Zhang
黃建豪 Huang Chien-Hao
柯志達 Zhi-Da Michael Ko
侯一明 Mia Hou
〈Remark after meeting with AIDA International〉
After a meeting with AIDA International. We have come to a consensus and mutual understanding. We, AIDA Taiwan and AIDA International reaffirm together that all member states have equal rightsand liabilities, and AIDA will continue to devote to an Equal environment of freediving competition in the future.
We would also give our greatest thanks to freediving community and other members state who supported Taiwan. Many countries decide to remove their flag to express solidarity with us. For that, We are deeply moved and grateful.
【An open letter of protest regarding the removal of the Taiwanese flag from AIDA Taiwan 】
On Day 7 (28th Sept, 2021) the female CWT discipline competition during the AIDA Depth world championship. Our Taiwanese flag is the only national flag among 44 countries removed at the live feed display without any sign of warning.
Based on the information we gathered from our staff members and athletes, we confirmed that the organizer determent the presence of the Taiwanese flag may lead to the interference by China’s broadcasting censorship. Hence, they made their own decision without consulting or even informing the Taiwanese delegation in order to guarantee the smooth streaming in China even knowing this very decision will harm the right of our delegation.
On the evening of September 28, the president of AIDA international Mr. AlexandruRussu kindly apologized to the Taiwan delegation regarding such a rush decision, however, they also clearly stated they have no intention of reinstating the Taiwanese flag on screen. Instead, we were left by two choices: either putting Taiwan’s IOC flag (which only means Chinese Taipei, not Taiwan) or remain blank as the national flag on display.
Limited by the options, our athlete chose to remain the blank rather than using the Taiwanese IOC flag which signifies the long oppression by China in international society.
AIDA Taiwan understands the tough decisions made by AIDA International and the organizer the difficulties behind all this. We appreciate their effort of weighing the benefit and trying to settle with the most satisfactory result for every party. However, this is still a huge compromise for Taiwan’s interest.
As an organization that also holding different competitions in Taiwan, we understand the difficulty and the tremendous amount of pressure for organizing such a huge international event, as a member state of AIDA international, AIDA Taiwan is more than willing to offer our help. We believe the freediving community is a big family and we are here to support each other.
Even though, We are also like to point out that Taiwan and the International freediving community have NO obligation to accommodate such absurd requests from Chinese broadcasting censorship which is entirely their own problem and occurred by their local authority. And we must always be cautious and remind ourselves not to draw ourselves into self-censorship when we encountering a similar situation.
Therefore, considering the current circumstances, we have no choice but officially protest to the AIDA International for the below reasons.
1. The organizer did not discuss nor inform AIDA Taiwan when they first encounter such issue beforehand and forcing our athletes to make their choice afterward which showing zero respect to AIDA Taiwan. This also does occur lots of unnecessary stress on our athletes which they should solely focus on their own competition
2. It is a reckless decision if only want to get through their Chinese censorship. There are multiple measures that could be implemented in order to achieve such intention without erasing the Taiwanese flag on our streaming, this could be detailed discuss beforehand instead of simply erasing it.
3. If AIDA International could easily take down the national flag of one of their member state simply because of the Chinese market or sponsors’will. We raise the question that where is the spirit and dignity of AIDA as a non-profit organization while facing such temptations. What is happening on AIDA Taiwan, the similar situation could also happen in any other member state.
Meanwhile, we kindly ask other members of AIDA to stand with us and:
1. Urging the assembly shall investigate this matter seriously, and request the executive committee of AIDA international to clearly reveal their decision-making process. Especially on whether Chinese partner hint or informed the organizer that the problem is from Taiwanese flag, and whether if the organizer try to have a discussion of protecting the right of athletes and member states.
2. Urging the assembly to reach a binding resolution for how to avoid the executive committee sacrifice the athletes’ and members’ interest in the future. Not only for Taiwan but also to ensure that a certain due process shall be conducted and under proper supervision when any third party violating our members’ rights.
3. Urging the assembly to discuss a motion in which the executive committee must make a public apology to AIDA Taiwan and Taiwanese athletes. And ask the committee must publicly assure that politics should not mix with sport in the future AIDA competition.
經過與主席Alex溝通之後，我們與AIDA international 得成共識與理解，並且共同重申所有會員國皆享平等的權利與義務，AIDA未來將會繼續致力於公平的自由潛水賽事。
在 2021 AIDA深度世界錦標賽，第七天(9/28)女子CWT項目賽事時，主辦單位無預警的在轉播畫面上撤下台灣國旗，讓當天44位出賽選手裡，台灣選手侯一明是唯一國旗空白的選手。事後在我方的詢問與了解下，才知道由於帶有台灣國旗的直播訊號，在中國一直受到干擾，影響中方的轉播，於是主辦單位為使中方得以順利轉播，在沒有告知AIDA TAIWAN與選手下，決定撤下轉播畫面上的台灣國旗，嚴重傷害到台灣選手的權益。
對於這件事情，AIDA TAIWAN雖可理解AIDA International以及主辦單位的困難，以及權衡整體利益下所下的決定。然而此舉仍然對我方利益造成重大損害。
AIDA TAIWAN在台灣也經常舉辦各種自由潛水賽事，我們理解要籌辦一個如此大型活動，必定有許多難以想像的壓力。因此身為AIDA的正式會員國，AIDA TAIWAN相當樂意協助解決AIDA International所遇到的困難，我們認為自由潛水是一個大家庭，而應該彼此互相支持。
1. 主辦單位沒有事先與AIDA TAIWAN討論或告知，事後又讓參賽選手作選擇。不僅讓台灣選手承擔過多額外的壓力，同時也不尊重AIDA TAIWAN。
3. 如果因為考量贊助商或中國市場，就可以輕易地取下一個會員國的國旗，傷害其權益，那麼AIDA作為一個非營利組織，其精神與尊嚴到底在哪？我們必須指出，這種妥協如果會發生在AIDA TAIWAN身上，未來也有可能發生在其他會員國身上。
1. 促請大會必須嚴肅調查此次事件，並要求AIDA International執委會清楚交代主辦單位針對此事的決策過程，特別是：中國合作夥伴是否曾提示主辦單位問題來源在台灣國旗；以及主辦單位是否曾經就保護運動員及成員國權益做出討論。
3. 促請大會討論是否要求執委會對AIDA Taiwan 與台灣選手公開致歉、是否要求執委會必須公開保證、承諾未來AIDA賽事不會讓政治凌駕運動精神，並保障所有會員國的權益。