Mon, 02 Oct 2023

Taipei [Taiwan], April 8 (ANI): Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen on Friday in a veiled warning to China said that pressure and obstacles will not let the island country stop engaging with the world, reported Taiwan News.

"The world had seen how the people stood even closer together when facing pressure and threats, and that being subject to pressure and obstacles did not stop Taiwan from conducting exchanges with the global community," she said.

Notably, Tsai returned from a 10-day trip which included a historic meeting with House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy in the United States and visits to allies Guatemala and Belize.

During a short address at Taoyuan International Airport, she said her trip had served to make the international community notice Taiwan, reported Taiwan News.

Tsai mentioned how three years of the COVID-19 pandemic had not affected cooperation with Taiwan's diplomatic allies, per UDN.

She mentioned how a hospital project in Guatemala had been completed during that period, while the living standards of people in Belize had improved.

Tsai also mentioned the expressions of support for democracy she had received in person from the president of Guatemala, the governor-general of Belize, and members of the US Senate and House of Representatives.

She ended her news conference by thanking Taiwanese communities overseas, reported Taiwan News.

Earlier, McCarthy reaffirmed the strong partnership between Taiwan and the US, and their commitment to safeguarding regional stability, following their meeting in California on Wednesday, reported Taipei Times.

"I believe our bond is stronger now than at any time or point in my lifetime," McCarthy told a joint news conference with Tsai following a two-hour closed-door meeting at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley.

The meeting was also attended by a bipartisan group of US lawmakers. It was the first meeting between a Taiwanese president and a US House speaker on US soil, and the third since Washington severed formal diplomatic ties with Taipei in 1979.

Tsai told the news conference that the presence of bipartisan lawmakers at the meeting and their unwavering support reassures the Taiwanese that "we are not isolated, and we are not alone," reported Taipei Times.

Taiwan's peace and democracy, which it has worked hard to build and maintain, are facing "unprecedented challenges," Tsai said.

Wednesday's meeting took place eight months after McCarthy's predecessor, then-US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, visited Taipei in August last year and met with Tsai at the Presidential Office.

Pelosi's visit was the first by a sitting US House speaker since a trip by Newt Gingrich in 1997. It prompted China to launch week-long large-scale military drills around Taiwan, and suspend the imports of dozens of Taiwanese agricultural and food products.

Beijing has raised objections to the meeting between Tsai and McCarthy.

Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Mao Ning earlier this week told a news briefing that Beijing would "take resolute measures" to protect its national interests should the two meet, reported Taipei Times. (ANI)

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