New AIT Complex in Taipei Shows Strength of US Commitment to Taiwan

The US$250-million complex shows the strength of the US commitment to Taiwan.

The News Lens
Date: 2018/06/13
By Casey Quakenbush

Photo Credit: Reuters / TPG


With the world’s attention focused a few thousand miles southwest, where President Donald Trump was shaking hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at a historic summit in Singapore, diplomats and businesspeople gathered in Taiwan’s capital to mark another kind of milestone.

The U.S. unveiled a new representative office in Taipei Tuesday, establishing a de facto embassy in the self-ruled island amid its escalating tensions with China. Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen attended the opening ceremony, where she reaffirmed her government’s commitment to its “vital relationship” with the U.S., Reuters reports.

The American Institute in Taiwan, built over nine years at a cost of about US$250 million, is bankrolled by the U.S. government and staffed by diplomats, effectively making the complex an embassy all but in name. The U.S. severed official diplomatic ties with Taiwan in 1979 to uphold Beijing’s “One China” policy, which maintains that the breakaway territory is part of the People’s Republic and can be reunified by force, if necessary.    [FULL  STORY]

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