Taiwan yesterday thanked US senators for introducing legislation that aims to help Taipei keep its 17 remaining allies, after China within three years poached five of the nation’s diplomatic allies.
The bipartisan Taiwan Allies International Protection and Enhancement Initiative (TAIPEI) Act introduced on Monday by Republican senators Cory Gardner and Marco Rubio, and Democratic senators Ed Markey and Bob Menendez is intended to strengthen Taiwan’s standing in the world, a news release issued by Gardner said.
It was created in response to five nations’ severance of diplomatic ties with Taiwan over the past two-and-a-half years due to Chinese pressure, it added.
“The TAIPEI Act requires a US strategy to engage with governments around the world to support Taiwan’s diplomatic recognition or strengthen unofficial ties with Taiwan,” the statement said.
It authorizes the US Department of State to downgrade US relations with any government that takes adverse action regarding Taiwan, including suspending or altering foreign assistance, such as military financing, it said.
“This bipartisan legislation demands a whole-of-government approach to stand up to China’s bullying tactics against Taiwan, and will send a strong message to those nations considering siding with China over Taiwan that there will be consequences for such actions,” Gardner was quoted as saying in the news release.
“Beijing is promising paydays to governments to entice them to cut diplomatic relations with Taiwan,” Markey said. “Without a coherent US strategy to push back, Taiwan’s official partners might drop from 17 to zero. We must stand up for our friends in Taiwan.”
Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Andrew Lee (李憲章) expressed gratitude for the senators’ long-term support.
Washington is the nation’s most important ally, Presidential Office spokesman Sidney Lin (林鶴明) said, thanking the US Congress for its long-standing support.
“We will also engage in close negotiations with different divisions of the US government to ensure that Taiwan’s international space will not be affected by other factors” Lin said.
Since President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) took office in May 2016, El Salvador, Sao Tome and Principe, Panama, the Dominican Republic and Burkina Faso have switched diplomatic recognition to Beijing.
A US Department of State spokesperson last month said that the decision by El Salvador, the last nation to cut ties, was disappointing.
“Although we recognize the sovereign right of every country to determine its diplomatic relations, we are deeply disappointed by this decision,” the spokesperson said.
Additional reporting by Su Yung-yao
SOLIDARITY: A group of European lawmakers condemned China’s aggressive moves, while the foreign minister of Lithuania said Taiwan ‘cannot become a second Ukraine’ A German parliamentary delegation would visit Taiwan in the first week of October, German lawmaker Holger Becker on Monday told visiting Democratic Progressive Party legislators Fan Yun (范雲) and Lin I-chin (林宜瑾) at the Bundestag in Berlin. Asked by Fan whether he is worried about possible reprisals from Beijing, such as banning him and his family from entering China, Becker said he is more interested in visiting Taiwan, as “now is the time for democracies to stand together.” Fan and Lin also met with German officials to exchange views on digital education and governance. Investing in digital infrastructure and protecting equal rights to
As China waged extensive military exercises off Taiwan, a group of US defense experts in Washington was focused on their own simulation of an eventual — but for now entirely hypothetical — US-China war over the nation. The unofficial what-if game is being conducted on the fifth floor of an office building not far from the White House, and it posits a US military response to a Chinese invasion in 2026. Even though the participants bring a US perspective, they are finding that a US-Taiwan victory, if there is one, could come at a huge cost. “The results are showing that under
‘SIMULATED ATTACKS’: Ten warships each from China and Taiwan were maneuvering at close quarters in the Taiwan Strait, with some Chinese vessels crossing the median line Taiwan yesterday reiterated that it would not succumb to pressure from Beijing after China carried out its most provocative military drills in decades in retaliation for US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan last week. “We will never bow to pressure. We uphold freedom and democracy, and believe Taiwanese disapprove [of] China’s bullying actions with force and saber rattling at our door,” Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said yesterday. China had “arrogantly” disrupted regional peace and stability, he said, calling on Beijing to not flex its military muscles. President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has also called on the international community to “support
DRILLS CONTINUE: China’s creation of a restricted zone across the median line of the Taiwan Strait challenges a 70-year-old fact, a ministry of defense official said The nation’s military fully complies with international rules and guidelines when responding to Chinese military drills, the Ministry of National Defense said yesterday, vowing to continue defending Taiwan in accordance with international law. China on Thursday launched four days of military drills around Taiwan proper in response to US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei. The drills were expected to end on Sunday, but neither Beijing nor Taipei confirmed their conclusion, although the Ministry of Transportation and Communications said it had seen some evidence suggesting at least a partial drawdown. However, China yesterday said the drills would continue, saying “the