The government yesterday welcomed a statement by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that “Taiwan has not been a part of China,” saying that the two sides of the Taiwan Strait should maintain the “status quo” based on equal dignity.
During a telephone interview with the Hugh Hewitt Show radio program aired on Thursday, Pompeo was asked to comment on the US’ commitments to Taiwan’s security and the opinions of radical elements of the Chinese Communist Party that Taiwan should be “retaken by force if necessary.”
In response, Pompeo said it was important to “get the language right.”
“Taiwan has not been a part of China, and that was recognized with the work that the [former US president Ronald] Reagan administration did to lay out the policies that the United States has adhered to now for three-and-a-half decades, and done so under both administrations,” he said, referring to Reagan’s “six assurances” made to Taipei in 1982.
“I actually think this is in fact bipartisan. I think the central understandings that this is a model for democracy that the people who live on Taiwan ought to be honored by having the Chinese live up to the commitments that they have made — I think this is something that both parties can agree to,” he said.
“You’ve seen our announcements with respect to weapon sales to Taiwan to assist in their defense capabilities. All of these things are designed to live up to the promises that have been made between, frankly, China and the Taiwanese people,” he added.
Pompeo also highlighted the importance of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue among the US, Australia, India and Japan, saying that it would build a set of common understandings that deliver increased security in the region for travel and navigation.
In Taipei, Presidential Office spokesman Xavier Chang (張惇涵) said in a statement yesterday that it is an indisputable fact that the Republic of China is a sovereign state of 23 million Taiwanese who love freedom and democracy, and are glad to make contributions to the global community.
Both sides of the Strait should, based on the principle of equal dignity, jointly maintain the peaceful and stable “status quo” across the Strait, he said.
Taiwan would continue to fulfill its international obligations, making positive contributions to cross-strait and regional peace, stability and prosperity, he said.
“The Republic of China is a sovereign state, not part of the People’s Republic of China, which is a fact as well as the status quo,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said in a separate statement, thanking Pompeo for his support.
The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that China would strike back against any moves that undermine its core interests.
Speaking in Beijing, Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌) said that Taiwan was an inalienable part of China and that Pompeo was further damaging US-China ties.
“We solemnly tell Pompeo and his ilk, that any behavior that undermines China’s core interests and interferes with China’s domestic affairs will be met with a resolute counterattack by China,” he said, without elaborating.
Additional reporting by Reuters
‘HARD DECISION’: The international medical society now only refers to Taiwanese groups as from ‘Chinese Taipei,’ after the WHO asked that it make the change Two Taiwanese medical groups have been forced to change the word “Taiwan” in their membership names for the International Society of Radiographers and Radiological Technologists (ISRRT) to “Chinese Taipei,” due to a request by the WHO. The two groups are the Taiwan Society of Radiological Technologists (TWSRT) and the Taiwan Association of Medical Radiation Technologists (TAMRT). On Dec. 23 last year, the TAMRT posted on Facebook screenshots of a letter it received from the ISRRT, informing it that the two groups’ membership names would be changed from “Taiwan - TWSRT” and “Taiwan - TAMRT” to “Chinese Taipei - TWSRT” and “Chinese Taipei
‘NO MORE’: Pompeo’s decision was not rushed before the change of administration, but was the result of a long review of Taiwan-US ties, a US assistant secretary said US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday announced that the US Department of State is voiding long-standing restrictions on how US diplomats and others have contact with their counterparts in Taiwan, just a little over a week before US president-elect Joe Biden is sworn in. Pompeo instructed executive branch agencies to consider “all ‘contact guidelines’ regarding relations with Taiwan ... to be null and void.” “For several decades the State Department has created complex internal restrictions to regulate our diplomats, service members, and other officials’ interactions with their Taiwanese counterparts,” Pompeo said in a statement. “The United States government took these actions
CONTACTS TRACED: The doctor and his nurse girlfriend, who also tested positive, have only mild symptoms, but their cases have led to hundreds of people being tested The first case of a doctor contracting COVID-19 after treating an infected patient was one of two locally transmitted cases and two imported cases reported by the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday. The second local case, No. 839, is the doctor’s girlfriend, a nurse who works at the same hospital. Case No. 838, a man in his 30s, is a doctor in a hospital in northern Taiwan that has been treating COVID-19 cases, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center. He was in a negative-pressure isolation ward where one of the confirmed patients was staying
DEPARTURE CEREMONY: Guam’s governor hailed the US’ move to end restrictions on contacts with Taiwanese officials, saying it would help the territory build ties with Taipei A humanitarian charter flight, carrying dozens of people who had either been stranded on Guam and Saipan amid border closures or were in need of medical treatment, arrived in Taiwan at 5:25pm yesterday. The flight, operated by China Airlines Ltd (中華航空), landed at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport with 47 passengers and 13 crew aboard. Five of the passengers had applied to local hospitals for treatment of tumors, heart arrhythmia or other conditions, and were approved by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, while four more are family members, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), who is the spokesman