Taipei, 21 February 2023 (TDI): Reportedly, Taiwan will increase military exchanges with the United States (US) to counter the increasingly uncertain situation in the region.
President of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen made these remarks when she denounced “aggressive expansionism” after meeting with visiting US lawmakers on Tuesday.
The five-day US Congressional visit has come after a top US defense official reportedly made a rare and highly secret stopover to the island as tensions between Washington and Beijing erupted over alleged Chinese spy balloons.
Tsai stated after meeting with the US delegation at her Taipei office that Taiwan and the US are continuing to strengthen military exchanges. The details pertaining to future exchanges have not been shared.
It is pertinent to note that the US diplomatically recognizes Beijing over Taipei and observes a one-China policy. However, despite that, it is also considered Taiwan’s most important international benefactor.
Beijing has censured the recent flurry of visits to the island by US politicians ever since last year’s visit of US Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan.
In addition, the meeting between the Chinese Director of the Office of the Central Foreign Affairs Commission, Wang Yi, and US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference (MSC), didn’t help in de-escalating the tensions.
Relations between the two countries are at an all-time low weeks after Blinken’s planned trip to Beijing was canceled due to what the US claims were a Chinese surveillance balloon shot down on February 4.