AIT Chair James Moriarty to visit Taiwan next week

02/27/2020 08:59 PM
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American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Chairman James Moriarty (File photo)
American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Chairman James Moriarty (File photo)

Taipei, Feb. 27 (CNA) The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) announced Thursday that its Chairman James Moriarty will visit Taiwan from March 1-7, his eighth trip to the country since he assumed the post in October 2016.

"While in Taiwan, he will meet with Taiwan authorities and other senior political and business figures," the AIT said in a press release, without revealing more details.

In a response to an inquiry from CNA on Moriarty's visit, AIT spokeswoman Amanda Mansour said her office does not have anything else to share publicly at this point.

Meanwhile, Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) welcomes Moriarty's upcoming visit and hopes to continue working with the United States to deepen the partnership which is based on shared values, ministry spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said in a statement.

The MOFA statement mentioned that Moriarty attended a post-2020 Taiwan presidential election forum on Jan. 11 in Washington D.C. and conveyed Washington's congratulations to Taiwan for its successful democratic elections.

The forum was co-hosted by Taiwan's representative office in Washington and U.S. thinktanks Global Taiwan Institute and Project 2049 Institute.

Moriarty, who led the political section at the AIT Taipei Main Office from 1995-1998, last visited Taiwan in October 2019. At that time he met with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and reasserted Washington's "abiding interest" in cross-strait peace and stability, a few weeks after Taiwan lost two diplomatic allies to China.

The AIT was launched in 1979 to serve as the de facto U.S. embassy in Taiwan in the absence of diplomatic ties. Its headquarters is located in Arlington, Virginia and chaired by Moriarty, while its main office in Taipei is headed by Director William Brent Christensen.

Moriarty has served as U.S. ambassador to Bangladesh and Nepal, Special Assistant to the President of the United States, Senior Director for Asia at the National Security Council, and Director for China Affairs at the National Security Council, according to the AIT.

(By Emerson Lim)

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