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U.S. Congress members express support for Taiwan

2019/05/09 18:30:10

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (right) / Image taken from facebook.com/TECRO.USA

Washington, May 8 (CNA) Members of the United States Congress across party lines expressed support for Taiwan at celebrations hosted by Taiwan's representative office in Washington on Wednesday to mark the 40th anniversary of the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA).

Twenty-seven members of Congress attended the event at the U.S. Capitol Building, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, representatives Eliot Engel and Michael McCaul, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman James Risch, and Senator Robert Menendez.

Addressing the gathering, Pelosi said that over the past four decades, the TRA has forged an "unshakable bond" between America and Taiwan.

"The Congress supports the people of Taiwan," she said. "It's not about politics, but about shared values of freedom, safety, democracy and human rights."

The recent passage of the Taiwan Assurance Act was a show of the U.S.' commitment to Taiwan, Pelosi said.

Also speaking at the event, Risch hailed the opening of the new compound of the American Institute in Taiwan.

"It is the latest example of a robust and continuing partnership that not only benefits the United States in Taiwan, but it also contributes to a free and open Indo-Pacific region," he said.

Risch also made a presentation to Taiwan's representative to the U.S. Stanley Kao (高碩泰) of a fine print copy of a Senate resolution, titled "Reaffirming the United States commitment to Taiwan and to the implementation of the Taiwan Relations Act," and signed by its co-sponsors.

The non-binding resolution states that the TRA and the Six Assurances continue to play an important part in maintaining peace, security and stability in the Western Pacific, which are in the political, security, and economic interests of the U.S. and Taiwan.

Several of other U.S. government officials also attended the event, including Patrick Murphy, principal deputy assistant secretary for East Asian and Pacific affairs; Kevin Moley, assistant secretary of state for international organization affairs; and Clarke Cooper, assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs.

"We have Republicans and Democrats ... all standing together," said Moley, who gave Kao a congratulatory note from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. "There is no division on one issue -- the support of Taiwan, your independence, your democracy, your strength, your friendship, your freedom."

Cooper, who was on the job for only the third day, said he "would not miss being here."

"The United States plays a long game and this is an enduring partnership with a reliable partner and a role model for democracy," he said. "I'm looking forward to coming to Taipei."

(By Flor Wang and Chiang Chin-yeh)
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