Taiwan (or the Republic of China) lies in the western Pacific Ocean, approximately 100 miles off the southeast coast of mainland China, 80 miles south of the Japanese Ryukyu Islands, and 230 miles north of the Philippine island of Luzon across the Bashi Channel. The total area of Taiwan is 13,892 square miles, with an estimated population of 23,071,779 in 2011. Among the 84.4 percent of the total population age 15 and older, 96.1 percent are reported to be literate.

Historical Background

In 1895, the Qing Empire of China ceded Taiwan to the Empire of Japan as a result of the First Sino-Japanese War in the Treaty of Shimonoseki (aka the Treaty of Maguan). Along with many other policies to reinforce its political and cultural control over ...

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