De facto US ambassador arrives in Taipei to meet Taiwanese president

Beijing, Apr 19 (EFE).- The chair of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), Laura Rosenberger, arrived in Taiwan on Tuesday for a six-day visit during which she is expected to meet with the island’s President Tsai Ing-wen.

Rosenberger, who heads what is the US’ “de facto” embassy in Taiwan – although based in Virginia – will also meet with several senior officials and politicians during her visit, according to a statement by the Taiwanese Foreign Ministry.

The statement underlined that Rosenberg, US President Joe Biden’s former adviser on China and Taiwan to the US National Security Council, was very familiar with Taiwanese politics, and she had accompanied Tsai in New York and Los Angeles during her stopovers on her last trip abroad earlier this year.

The ministry also hoped Rosenberger would help make progress towards possible opportunities for bilateral collaboration, adding that the Taiwanese government looked forward to working with her.

In the absence of diplomatic relations, the AIT represents US interests on the island, where it has its main office in Taipei and another in the southern city of Kaohsiung.

The visit follows recent tensions between China and the United States in the wake of Tsai’s meeting with the US House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Apr.5.

In response to the meeting, China carried out four days of intense military maneuvers around Taiwan that included a simulation of the island’s blockade and in which the Shandong, Beijing’s second largest aircraft carrier was deployed.

The island is one of the main reasons for conflict between China and the US, mainly because Washington is Taiwan’s main arms supplier and its main ally in the event of a war with the Asian giant.

China claims sovereignty over Taiwan, considering it a rebel province ever since the KMT forces retreated there after losing the civil war in 1949, and has not ruled out the use of force for reunification. EFE


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