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MOFA closely watching Taiwan's ties with Kiribati

2019/09/20 11:58:11

Taipei, Sept. 20 (CNA) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said Friday that it is closely monitoring Taiwan's ties with Kiribati, amid speculations that the Pacific island nation might switch diplomatic recognition to China.

MOFA said it has been communicating with Kiribati in an attempt to bring the situation under control.

"We will provide an explanation to the public once we obtain further information," MOFA said.

Speculations have been running wild on social media that Kiribati, a string of islands in the central Pacific, might soon cut ties with Taiwan and forge diplomatic relations with China in a domino effect in the region triggered by the Solomon Islands' decision earlier this week to switch recognition.

On Monday, the Solomon Islands announced it was suspending official relations with the Republic of China (Taiwan) in favor of the People's Republic of China, leaving Taiwan with only 16 diplomatic allies, including Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, Palau, Tuvalu and Nauru in the Pacific region.

Taiwan and Kiribati established formal diplomatic relations in Nov. 2003.

(By Flor Wang and Elaine Hou)