After Taiwan’s election, its new envoy to the US offers assurances to Washington and Beijing

Taiwan’s top envoy to the U.S. says Taipei will work with Washington to ensure stability and peace in the Taiwan Strait, just a few days after the island elected a president that Beijing denounces as a troublemaker. (Jan. 18) WASHINGTON (AP) — Taiwan’s top diplomat in Washington has a message for both the island’s Chinese adversaries and its American friends: Don’t worry that Taiwan’s new president-elect will worsen relations with Beijing and possibly draw the U.S. into a conflict. President-elect Lai Ching-te plans to keep the status quo in the Taiwan Strait, Alexander Tah-Ray Yui told The Associated Press on Thursday in his first interview with an international news organization since he arrived in the U.S. in December. The Chinese government has called Lai a troublemaker who will push Taiwan toward independence. But Yui said Lai is willing to engage with Beijing, even as the island seeks to strengthen its unofficial ties with Washington for stability in the region. “We want the status quo. We want the way it is — neither unification, neither independence. The way it is is the way we want to live right now,” said Yui, Taiwan’s de-facto ambassador to the U.S., noting the stance is largely supported at home and will guide the new administration. READ MORE China blasts president of the Philippines for congratulating Taiwan election winner What a new president in Taiwan means for the island, China, the US and the world Nauru switches diplomatic recognition from Taiwan to China Yui spoke to the AP five days after Lai won the presidential election with more than 40% of the vote in a three-way race. Lai will succeed Tsai Ing-wen when he is inaugurated in May. His victory, which gives the independence-leaning Democratic Progressive Party an unprecedented third presidential term, was not welcomed […]

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