Wed, Jun 20, 2018 - Page 3 News List

President thanks Belize, St Lucia for friendship

Staff writer, with CNA

President Tsai Ing-wen, right, yesterday talks with Belizean House of Representatives Speaker Laura Tucker-Longsworth, left, at the Presidential Office in Taipei.

Photo: CNA

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday thanked allies Belize and Saint Lucia for their support of Taiwan’s efforts to expand its international participation.

While meeting with a delegation of Belizean lawmakers at the Presidential Office Building, Tsai said Belizean President Dean Barrow has been firm in his support of Taiwan’s bid to gain greater international participation and has maintained long-term bilateral exchanges.

Belize has spoken up in favor of Taiwan’s inclusion in major international organizations and events, including the World Health Assembly (WHA), the International Civil Aviation Organization and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Tsai said.

Since she took office in 2016, Taiwan and Belize have increased exchange visits by high-level government officials, and Belize has participated in several food exhibitions in Taiwan, she said.

The visit by Belizean House of Representatives Speaker Laura Tucker-Longsworth, Senate President Lee Mark Chang and Senator Stephen Duncan is indicative of the importance of parliamentary diplomacy between the two nations, Tsai said.

She was grateful for Belize’s support and felt that the delegation’s visit would help strengthen ties, she said.

Tsai expressed similar sentiments regarding Saint Lucia during a separate meeting where newly appointed Saint Lucian Ambassador Edwin Laurent presented his credentials.

Saint Lucian Prime Minister Allen Chastanet has voiced support for Taiwan’s international presence at the UN General Assembly and has urged the UNFCCC to allow Taiwan to attend its meetings, she said.

Its government also sent a letter to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, asking that Taiwan be allowed to participate in the WHA as an observer, Tsai said.

She welcomed Laurent, an experienced diplomat, to Taiwan and said his appointment symbolized his nation’s high regard for its friendship and diplomatic ties with Taiwan, and asked him to convey Taiwan’s gratitude to Chastanet for his support.

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