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208 views • August 15, 2022

US Lawmakers Arrive in Taiwan Amid China Tensions

NTD News
NTD News
A group of five U.S. lawmakers arrived in Taiwan on Sunday, coming just two weeks after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) went to the self-governing island, according to Taiwanese officials. A Twitter post issued by the Taiwanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs released photos of Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and other lawmakers meeting with top Taiwanese officials. Other than the senator, members of the delegation included Reps. John Garamendi (D-Calif.), Alan Lowenthal (D-Calif.), Don Beyer (D-Va.), and Amata Radewagen (R-American Samoa), according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. "Vice Minister Yui extended the warmest of welcomes to #Taiwan’s longstanding friend @SenMarkey & his cross-party delegation comprising @RepGaramendi, @RepLowenthal, @RepDonBeyer & @RepAmata. We thank the like-minded #US???????? lawmakers for the timely visit & unwavering support," the Twitter post said. Taiwan's Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexander Yui (R) welcomes U.S. Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) at Taoyuan International Airport in Taoyuan, Taiwan on Aug. 14, 2022. (Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Handout via Reuter) Markey in a statement confirmed that an unannounced delegation led by him arrived on Sunday and would meet with Taiwanese officials the same day. "The delegation will meet with senior Taiwan leaders to discuss U.S.-Taiwan relations, regional security, trade and investment, global supply chains, climate change, and other significant issues of mutual interest," his statement read. Taiwan's presidential office told Reuters that the group would meet President Tsai Ing-wen on Monday morning. Taiwan's foreign ministry published pictures of four of the group being met at Taipei's downtown Songshan Airport having arrived on a U.S. Air Force transport jet, while Markey arrived at the Taoyuan International Airport. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has previously issued threats about such visits in the past but it hasn't said anything yet relating to Markey's group. Since 1949, the CCP has claimed Taiwan as its territory despite Taiwan never having been under CCP rule. After Pelosi's visit on Aug. 2, the CCP carried out a series of live-fire drills in the South China Sea. Pelosi was the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Taiwan since former GOP Speaker Newt Gingrich's trip to the island in 1997. Taiwan's defense ministry said on Sunday it had detected 22 Chinese aircraft and six naval ships in and around the Taiwan Strait. A mostly Republican delegation visited Taiwan earlier this year, which included Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.). Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) also joined their delegation to Taiwan in April. That visit drew threats and warnings from top CCP officials at the time.
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