Taiwan is striving to consolidate ties with its diplomatic allies, even as some of them show signs of wavering and could switch recognition to Beijing due to Chinese enticements, Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) said yesterday.
Briefing lawmakers on the nation’s diplomatic situation at a legislative session, Wu said that China has been facing domestic and international pressure over the past few years and might try to poach more of Taiwan’s 17 diplomatic allies to divert attention from its difficulties.
Some allies have shown signs that they could switch allegiance, Wu said, without naming them.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
“We are doing our best to solidify ties with them,” he added.
Wu reiterated that Taiwan would not engage in checkbook diplomacy to counter China.
Efforts to cement relations with allies include working closer with like-minded countries, including the US, and participating in their foreign aid projects in the nation’s allies, especially in Latin America and the South Pacific, Wu said.
Taiwan has lost five diplomatic allies since President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) took office in May 2016, the most recent being El Salvador in August last year.
Meanwhile, Beijing has taken a hardline stance on cross-strait relations since Tsai took office, due to the Democratic Progressive Party’s refusal to recognize the so-called “1992 consensus.”
The “1992 consensus” — a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted making up in 2000 — refers to a tacit understanding between the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the Chinese government that both sides acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
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