Five House members meet with Taiwanese president despite Chinese objections

The president of Taiwan thanked five U.S. lawmakers for meeting with her this week and discussing the alliance between the island nation and the U.S..

Your delegation’s visit to #Taiwan & your support strengthens my conviction that our democratic partnership will continue to be a key force for good in the region & world,” said Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen after meeting with the lawmakers on Friday.

Tsai met with House representatives Mark Takano (D-Calif.), Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), Colin Allred (D-Texas), Sara Jacobs (D-Calif.) and Nancy Mace (R-S.C.), despite the objections of Chinese officials.

China’s communist ruling party claims sovereignty over Taiwan, though the island has governed itself democratically for decades. Both China and Taiwan have ramped up military in recent months amid rising tensions between the two.

The U.S. has long maintained unofficial diplomatic relations with Taiwan’s government while officially recognizing Chinese authority over the island. Recently, amid reports of China’s military buildup and demonstrations of force, the U.S. has further advanced its alliance with Taiwan. President Biden invited Taiwan earlier this month to a “Summit for Democracy” scheduled for December, a move which China criticized as political gamesmanship.

Slotkin, who the Chinese embassy in Washington, D.C., tried to discourage from attending the meeting with Tsai, tweeted during the visit that “democratic values still and always matter.”

“I’m midway through my visit to Taiwan & this much is clear: this place is on the rise,” she wrote. “The fortitude & determination of the people, led by their dynamic President, is downright inspiring — and I don’t inspire easily.”

Both Jacobs and Allred praised Taiwan’s president in their own respective tweets, and said they were ‘honored” to meet with Ing-wen. 

Officials with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Taiwan also reportedly met with the lawmakers, discussing objectives in the Indonesian and Pacific seas.
“Without a shred of doubt, we’re great democratic partners in countering the expansion of authoritarianism & safeguarding our shared values,” the ministry tweeted on Friday.

Tags China Colin Allred Elissa Slotkin Joe Biden Mark Takano Nancy Mace Sara Jacobs Taiwan U.S. U.S. Congress

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