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Taiwan is hoping to repeat a convention-breaking telephone call with the incoming U.S. president, in defiance of warnings from China.
Taiwan’s government is in discussions over arranging a phone call between President Tsai Ing-wen and Joe Biden, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu told lawmakers in Taipei on Thursday.
“On the topic of congratulating the U.S. president-elect, we will do it in the most appropriate way,” Wu said. “We are communicating about this. We are considering various ways, including a phone call, to congratulate the new president.”
Four years ago, Donald Trump took a congratulatory call from Tsai, the first time a U.S. president-elect had spoken to a Taiwanese head of state since Washington broke ties with Taipei in 1979. The Communist government in Beijing, which claims Taiwan as part of its territory despite never having controlled the island,dismissed the call as a gimmick.
Asked by lawmakers if a Biden refusal to take Tsai’s call would represent a diplomatic setback for Taiwan, Wu said any call would have no bearing on the health of ties with the U.S.
Tsai was among the first to congratulate Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on their election victory, saying in atweet that she looked forward to working together to further strengthen U.S-Taiwan relations and contributions to international society.
Now it is my turn to extend congratulations to @JoeBiden & @KamalaHarris on being elected President & VP-elect. The values on which we have built our relationship could not be stronger. I look fwd to working together to further our friendship, & contributions to int’l society.Joe Biden
@JoeBidenCongratulations to President Tsai and the people of Taiwan for another successful election. You are stronger because of your free and open society. The United States should continue strengthening our ties with Taiwan and other like-minded democracies. https://twitter.com/TIME/status/1215991751380480000…
1:07 AM · Nov 8, 2020
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