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Updated January 16th, 2024 at 18:19 IST

China Summons Philippine Ambassador Over Taiwan After Elections

Slamming Philippines’ congratulatory message, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that Philippine envoy was summoned to provide "explanation."

Reported by: Digital Desk
Chinese President Xi Jinping
Chinese President Xi Jinping | Image:AP
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China on Tuesday summoned the Philippine ambassador after President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. congratulated the island nation’s newly elected Lai Ching-te who clutched victory in Taiwanese elections. Lai, of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), was pronounced as the self ruled nation’s leader over weekend. Marcos congratulated Lai, saying in a statement that he was looking "forward to close collaboration" and "strengthening mutual interests” with Taiwan.

The message angered Beijing as it considers Taiwan as inalienable part of China and has vowed to unify the self-governing island. China calls Lai a “troublesome” politician who actively backs the democratic forces on the island and cozied with the West.

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Philippine envoy ‘summoned to provide responsible explanation’

Slamming Philippines’ congratulatory message, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said that the Philippine envoy was summoned to provide a "responsible explanation."  "The relevant remarks of President Marcos constitute a serious violation of the One China principle and ... a serious breach of the political commitments made by the Philippines to the Chinese side, and a gross interference in China's internal affairs," Mao added.

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Beijing asked Philippines to "stop immediately its wrongful words and deeds on Taiwan-related issues and sending wrong signals to separatist forces for Taiwan independence.” In response, the Philippines' foreign ministry confirmed the "One China policy" and added that Marcos intended to recognise the Philippines and Taiwan's "mutual interests” and strengthen ties.

China earlier also derided the US for congratulating the new Taiwanese President Lai Ching-te, sayign that it sends "a gravely wrong signal" to the Taiwanese independence and democratic forces. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken sent Taiwanese president-elect William Lai a message of congratulations after he won the elections and clutched the landslide victory. Chinese foreign ministry slammed the US for backing the “troublesome” politician and said that the congratulatory remark was in violation to Washington’s commitment to maintain only the unofficial ties with the island nation. Blinken’s message to Lai angered China as he maintained that Taipei and Washington’s ties are rooted in “democratic values.”

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"We look forward to working with Dr Lai and Taiwan's leaders of all parties to advance our shared interests and values," US Secretary of State said in a statement. He added, that US, one of the closest allies of Taiwan, is "committed to maintaining cross-strait peace and stability.” In his carefully worded congratulatory message, Blinken said that US looks forward to bolstering “our longstanding unofficial relationship" and be "consistent with the US One China policy.” As a part of the One China policy, US maintains the formal ties with mainland only and not the island of Taiwan.

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Published January 16th, 2024 at 18:19 IST

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