New Party chief says delegation set for 'journey of the Chinese nation' Officials from Taiwan's pro-reunification New Party are confident of securing a meeting with President Hu Jintao when they make a 'journey of the Chinese nation' to the mainland next week. The trip, coming after the landmark back-to-back mainland visits by Kuomintang chairman Lien Chan and People First Party (PFP) leader James Soong Chu-yu in May, would take party officials to Guangzhou, Nanjing , Dalian and Beijing for a week from Wednesday, party chairman Yok Mu-ming said. 'We are defining our visit as a trip to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the war of resistance against Japanese aggression. In short, we call it a 'journey of the nation',' he said. Mr Yok said the group would visit the Huanghuagang martyrs' shrine in Guangzhou and the Sun Yat-sen mausoleum in Nanjing, and meet a range of mainland-based Taiwanese businessmen in Dalian. In Beijing, the group would hold talks with mainland leaders about cross-strait exchanges, while Mr Yok would make a speech at a university. Party officials said the group would meet Mr Hu and discuss topics including the controversial Diaoyu Islands issue, as well as joint exploration of resources in the waters around the East China Sea island chain. Mr Yok emphasised that his group would receive the same treatment as that accorded to the KMT and the PFP delegations. Mr Lien and Mr Soong held meetings with Mr Hu during their visits to Beijing. Unlike the KMT and PFP, the New Party has seen its popular support significantly eroded in Taiwan in recent years. In December's legislative elections, it managed to retain just one seat in the legislature and won only three seats in last month's National Assembly elections. There have been persistent rumours the party will cease to exist due to its shrinking membership. Speaking in Beijing earlier, a spokesman for the Taiwan Affairs Office under the State Council, Li Weiyi , confirmed the New Party's visit but declined to specify who would receive the delegation. The spokesman would only say that it would be given an 'appropriate reception'. Mr Li, meanwhile, rejected comments by Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian that he should meet Mr Hu in a 'third country' - if such a meeting could take place. Mr Chen had suggested he would meet Mr Hu if a meeting could be held without 'pre-set conditions' and it was conducted in a 'third country'. But Mr Li yesterday said that was out of the question. 'The Taiwan issue is an internal issue of the Chinese people, so any such meeting should only be held on our own soil,' he said.