TANGIBLE SUPPORT:The US has nearly doubled the number of its security cooperation events to help Taiwan improve its self-defense capabilities, a US official said
Date: Feb 13, 2016
By: William Lowther / Staff reporter in WASHINGTON
The US remains committed to supporting Taiwan’s “confidence and dignity” through increased participation in the international community and enhanced security, a senior Washington official said on Thursday.
“Our efforts at supporting Taiwan’s self-defense capabilities extend beyond arms sales,” US Deputy Assistant Secretary for East Asia Susan Thornton said.
“We support Taiwan’s capacity-building efforts through visits, maintenance programs and exchanges,” she told a US congressional hearing on the future of US-Taiwan relations.
The hearing, called by the House of Representatives Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific, turned almost testy at times as members quizzed Thornton on Taiwan’s trade deficit with the US, on Taipei’s possible entry to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and arms sales.
She repeatedly refused to discuss defense deals in the open hearing, but promised to give more details in a classified briefing for subcommittee members which was scheduled for later in the day. [FULL STORY]