The nation’s diplomacy with the US maintains a balance between Democrats and Republicans, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday, after the Washington Post reported that Taipei favors Republicans and US President Donald Trump.
President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration has privately expressed concerns that if elected, former US vice president Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential candidate, might resume the foreign policy of former US president Barack Obama and become more conciliatory toward Beijing, the report published on Friday said.
The report, citing two anonymous sources, said that when Tsai began her second term in May, editors compiling a video montage of congratulatory messages cut the messages sent by Democrats and placed an emphasis on Republican well-wishers.
One of the sources said that Taiwanese officials later apologized to the Democrats, it added.
The ministry earlier this month shared on Twitter an article from the right-wing Breitbart news site and retweeted US first lady Melania Trump’s post appealing to Pennsylvania voters, it said.
The ministry in a news release yesterday said that the Washington Post report is incorrect and that no apology was made to the Democrats.
The video montage in question included many heavyweight Democrats and Republicans, including US Senate Taiwan Caucus Co-chair Robert Menendez and US Representative Eliot Engel, chairman of the US House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, the ministry said.
Due to the limited length of the video, all of the congratulatory messages from different countries were edited and were not shown in their entirety, it said.
The ministry did afterward explain the matter to those who sent their congratulations, and it did not receive any complaints from US senators and representatives, it said.
Retweeting Melania Trump’s post was a lapse by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in Washington, and it removed the post soon after it found out about it, the ministry said.
Representative to the US Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) yesterday also reasserted the government’s neutrality.
“I want to reiterate that our government does not take positions on US elections. Since arriving in Washington, I have reached out to new friends and old friends in both parties, and I appreciate the bipartisan support and friendship for Taiwan,” Hsiao wrote on Twitter.
“Washington’s bipartisan support for Taiwan is based on our common values and interests. My goal is to work to strengthen the foundation for positive relations for decades to come, regardless of which party is in government, in Taiwan or in the US,” she wrote.
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