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Taiwan will stand with U.S. for regional peace: president

2018/02/21 19:05

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文, right)/photo courtesy of the Presidential Office

Taipei, Feb. 21 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) received a visiting U.S. congressional delegation Wednesday and took the opportunity to reiterate Taiwan's commitment to protecting regional stability and defending shared democratic values alongside the U.S.

A Presidential Office statement released after the meeting revealed that Tsai thanked the delegation, made up of long-time supporters of Taiwan, including Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), co-chairman of the Senate Taiwan Caucus, for being Taiwan's most solid friends.

Taiwan has never felt alone or helpless, thanks to U.S. support, Tsai said.

This solid friendship, which has overcome the test of time, reflects the shared values between the two countries, particularly in terms of freedom, human rights, and the peace and stability of the Asia-Pacific region, she continued.

Tsai pointed out that even with the ever-growing challenges in the region, Taiwan is glad to see that the U.S. is committed to a free and open Indo-Pacific region, noting that Taiwan too will find more ways to cooperate with the U.S. on regional efforts.

John Deng (鄧振中), Taiwan's top trade negotiator and a minister without portfolio overseeing the government's New Southbound Policy, noted in January that Taiwan is looking to strengthen its cooperation with the U.S. in the region covered by the New Southbound Policy, as President Donald Trump's administration has also made the Indo-Pacific region a priority.

Tsai concluded the visit by highlighting many of the accomplishments in which the U.S. and Taiwan have cooperated, including trade, arms sales and Taiwan's international participation.

With Wednesday being the first day back at work following the Lunar New Year holiday, Tsai expressed hope that U.S.-Taiwan relations can build on this solid foundation and be strengthened in the coming year.

The delegation, led by Inhofe, was composed of members of both the Senate and House Armed Services Committee, including Michael Rounds (R-SD), Joni Ernst, (R-IA), Daniel Sullivan (R-AK) and Trent Kelly (R-MS). It pledged to continue its support of the decades-long U.S. policy of providing Taiwan with sufficient armaments to defend itself.

(By Yeh-Su ping and Kuan-lin Liu)Enditem/J