October 9, 2006

Taiwan: Seeking to Prevent Tuvalu from Recognizing China

Taiwan is trying to save diplomatic ties with Tuvalu as China is persuading the Pacific island state to drop Taipei and recognize Beijing, a newspaper said on Saturday.

Taipei- Taiwan is trying to save diplomatic ties with Tuvalu as China is persuading the Pacific island state to drop Taipei and recognize Beijing, a newspaper said on Saturday. The Liberty Times, quoting an unnamed Taipei Foreign Ministry source, said China was attempting to persuade Tuvalu to cut ties with Taiwan before Taiwan's October 10 National Day celebrations, so as to humiliate Taiwan.

In response, the Foreign Ministry has urgently changed its ambassador to Tuvalu, naming a new ambassador last Tuesday who will leave for Tuvalu on October 15.

Taiwan-Tuvalu ties have been shaky for several months, the paper said. When President Chen Shui-bian hosted a summit of Pacific island leaders in Palau in September, Tuvalu's prime minister initially refused to attend.

Having split from China since the 1949 end of the Chinese civil war, Taiwan currently is recognized by only 24 countries. A total of 170 countries recognize China, which regards Taiwan as a Chinese province.

 

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