The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosiwill lead a congressional delegation that will make a tour in the Asia-Pacific regionhis office confirmed today, that does not mention a stopover in Taiwan.
The six-member delegation will visit Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan, said the statement from Pelosi’s office.
“The trip will focus on mutual security, economic partnership and democratic governance in the Indo-Pacific region,” according to the statement.
“Our delegation will hold high-level meetings to discuss how we can continue to advance our shared interests and values, including peace and security, economic growth and trade, the COVID-19 pandemic, the climate crisis, human rights and democratic governance,” Pelosi said in the note quoted by the AFP news agency.
Relations between the United States and China have been going through a period of tension since the possibility of Pelosi visiting Taiwan was raised.
China considers Taiwan, an island of some 23 million inhabitants, as one of its provinces, which has not yet been reunited with the rest of its territory since the end of the Chinese civil war (1949).
The Chinese Government opposes any initiative that gives international legitimacy to the Taiwanese authorities and any official contact between Taiwan and other countries.
On Thursday, President Joe Biden and his counterpart Xi Jinping had a tense phone conversation, in which the Chinese leader told the White House chief that the United States should not “play with fire” when it comes to Taiwan.
Along these lines, the spokesman for the Chinese Air Force insisted on Sunday that the defense of Chinese territory was the “sacred mission” of the Army.
“The Air Force has a strong determination, total confidence and sufficient capabilities to defend the national sovereignty and territorial integrity“, the spokesman said, according to the People’s Daily, the press organ of the Communist Party of China.
Since 1979, the United States has recognized “one China” with its capital in Beijing. It does not officially recognize Taiwan, but supports it militarily.
In the conversation with Xi, Biden assured that the position of the United States regarding Taiwan did not change and that his country opposes “unilateral efforts to change the status or threaten peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.”
This week, the Taiwanese military held its largest annual military exercises, which included simulations of intercepting Chinese attacks from the sea.
At the same time, the US aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan and its flotilla set sail from Singapore for the South China Sea, according to the US Navy.
China responded yesterday with a military exercise with “live ammunition” in the Taiwan Strait.