Blinken to value Taiwan's positive role in world affairs: Paal

11/25/2020 02:59 PM
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Antony Blinken. Photo from
Antony Blinken. Photo from

Washington, Nov. 24 (CNA) Taiwan's positive role in various global systems will be valued by Antony Blinken, U.S. President-elect Joe Biden's pick for secretary of state, a former director of the Taipei Office of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) said Tuesday.

"Taiwan's positive role in the global economic, political and health system will be appropriately appreciated" if Blinken is successfully appointed, Douglas Paal told CNA via email.

President-elect Biden announced earlier this week that he will nominate Blinken to the post of secretary of state. Blinken will have to be confirmed by the Senate before he can officially assume the position.

The 58-year-old Blinken served as deputy secretary of state from 2015 to 2017 and deputy national security advisor from 2013 to 2015 under former U.S. President Barack Obama.

According to Paal, Blinken is fully trusted by Biden and will handle foreign affairs in a more predictable fashion.

In terms of China, Blinken will not be unnecessarily provocative, nor will he be overly reliant on China's cooperation, said Paal.

He will only seek cooperation with China where appropriate, such as on COVID-19, environmental issues and nuclear non-proliferation, Paal said.

As Blinken's main job will be to strengthen and rebuild the U.S.' position in international forums and coalitions, Taiwan's positive role in global affairs will be appreciated, Paal said.

Former AIT Chairman Richard Bush, meanwhile, said that Blinken "understands the importance of America's Asian allies and partners."

Blinken also places a great value on democracy, and his team -- which will likely comprise officials from the Obama administration -- will "restore the time-tested, institutionalized process of policy-making" in regards to foreign policy, Bush said.

Stephen Young, a former director of AIT's Taipei office, said that while he did not know Blinken personally, his resume was impressive.

Young expressed hope that with support of Congress, both Biden and Blinken will "continue to support Taiwan's democracy and economy" in the face of continuous threats and provocations from China.

(By Stacy Hsu and Chiang Yi-ching)


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