A delegation of Taiwanese legislators was on Tuesday welcomed at the Dutch House of Representatives for the first time in history, where they exchanged views with members.
The meeting was “historic,” said Dutch lawmaker Rudmer Heerema, who hosted the delegation, comprising Democratic Progressive Party legislators Chiu Chih-wei (邱志偉), Hsu Chih-chieh (許智傑) and Tsai Shih-ying (蔡適應).
The Taipei Representative Office in the Netherlands said that the Dutch parliament made an exception in arranging the meeting, as it does not usually host foreign visitors during a voting session.
Photo courtesy of the Taipei Representative Office in the Netherlands via CNA
Heerema, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and seven other Dutch lawmakers from across party lines showed interest in a wide range of issues related to Taiwan’s political and economic situation during the meeting, a video of the meeting showed.
They asked about the implications of the Russia-Ukraine war for Taiwan, relations across the Taiwan Strait, Taiwan’s ties with other nations in the Indo-Pacific region, and opportunities for cooperation between Taiwan and the Netherlands in the technology and semiconductor sectors, the video showed.
On the Taiwan-China issue, the Taiwanese legislators said it was important for the two sides to negotiate on an equal footing, and it was also necessary for Taiwan to build up its defensive capabilities to help avoid war.
If a democratic alliance can effectively resist Russia’s aggression in Ukraine, China would see it and not dare start a war in the Asia-Pacific region, Tsai said.
Chiu thanked the Dutch parliament for adopting six motions since 2019 that expressed support for Taiwan.
The motions included backing Taiwan’s participation in the WHO, Interpol and the International Civil Aviation Organization — organizations that do not include Taiwan because of Beijing’s objections.
Another motion urged the Dutch government to openly express its opposition to China unilaterally changing the “status quo” in the Taiwan Strait.
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