The US Congress held a welcome party for King Pu-tsung (金溥聰), Taiwan’s recently appointed representative to the US, at Capitol Hill on Wednesday.
King traveled to the US in December last year to assume his post, and Congress held the party to formally welcome and introduce him.
A total of 48 Congress members — 13 senators and 35 representatives — attended the party to greet King and his wife, Tina Chou (周慧婷).
Ed Royce, chairman of the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, said at the party that he would introduce a bill in the US House of Representatives the following day to support a bid by Taiwan to join the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as an observer.
Royce, who led a US congressional delegation to Taiwan in late January, also said that when he visited a naval base in southern Taiwan, he found that the country’s submarines were fitted with equipment dating from World War II.
He said he supports Taiwan’s phasing out of its aging fighter planes and submarines.
US House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said she told King previously that it is important for international aviation safety for Taiwan to be an ICAO member.
Robert Menendez, chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, as well as Steve Chabot, chairman of the subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific, also attended.
King said that since assuming his post last year, he has visited many senators and representatives.
He said they are good friends of Taiwan and that he hopes to continue to work toward strengthening bilateral relations.