Tsai, Pelosi phone call no mention of possible US trip: FM

04/01/2019 02:22 PM
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President Tsai Ing-wen
President Tsai Ing-wen

Taipei, April 1 (CNA) U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi did not invite President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) to visit the U.S. during their phone conversation last week, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) said Monday.

Wu said the president had a phone conversation with Pelosi during a transit stopover in Hawaii on March 28, before Tsai flew back to Taiwan following state visits to three of the nation's diplomatic allies in the Pacific.

During the call, the two had a friendly conversation as Pelosi has long supported human rights and democracy, Wu said.

However, Pelosi did not raise the issue of possibly extending an invitation to Tsai to speak at a joint session of the U.S. Congress, the minister said, responding to a question raised by New Power Party lawmaker Freddy Lim (林昶佐), who asked if the issue was raised during a Legislative session.

The suggestion was first made by a group of U.S. senators in February in a joint letter to Pelosi, calling on her to invite Tsai to address a joint session of the U.S. Congress.

The letter, signed by U.S. Senators Cory Gardner, Marco Rubio, Tom Cotton, John Cornyn, and Ted Cruz, said the gesture would enhance U.S. Taiwan relations as both sides mark the 40th anniversary of the the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA), which forms the basis of the U.S. unofficial relationship with Taiwan in the absence of official diplomatic ties.

In response, Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) expressed gratitude but stressed that there are no current plans for President Tsai to visit Washington.

(By Joseph Yeh)


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