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Taiwan recalls ambassador from Honduras

Taiwan recalls ambassador from Honduras

Taiwan recalls ambassador from Honduras

Taiwan recalls ambassador from Honduras

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  • Taiwan stated Thursday that it will withdraw its ambassador to Honduras.
  • In 2018, El Salvador, Burkina Faso, and the Dominican Republic severed ties with Taiwan.
  • Wu had confessed that the situation was not hopeful.
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Taiwan stated Thursday that it will withdraw its ambassador to Honduras as relations between the two deteriorate, with the Central American country ready to switch diplomatic recognition from Taiwan to China.

Taiwan’s foreign ministry issued a statement saying it had recalled the ambassador to “express our strong dissatisfaction” with Honduras sending its foreign minister and a group to Beijing this week.

The move “ignores the traditional friendship” between Honduras and Taiwan, which stretches back more than 80 years, and “seriously hurts the feelings of the Taiwan government and people,” said the statement.

It added that Taiwan had “repeatedly reminded the Honduran government of the risk of trusting China’s commitment to establishing diplomatic relations.”

Honduran President Xiomara Castro declared on March 15 that the country will establish diplomatic relations with China, thereby ending the country’s present connection with Taiwan.

China’s governing Communist Party has made the One China Policy a condition for diplomatic relations, requiring countries to terminate official connections with Taiwan, which it claims as part of its territory despite never having held it.

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Just 14 nations have formal ties with Taiwan, including Honduras, with other countries in Central America and the Pacific switching recognition to China in recent years.

In 2018, El Salvador, Burkina Faso, and the Dominican Republic severed ties with Taiwan. Kiribati and the Solomon Islands followed suit the following year.

Last week, Honduras’ foreign minister praised China’s economic strength as “second only to the United States,” and expressed optimism that diplomatic ties would lead to investment and trade prospects.

According to Parsifal D’Sola, founder and head of the ABF China-Latin America Research Center, these economic benefits are especially tempting to emerging Latin American countries and difficult for Taiwan or its allies to dispute.

“This is basically something that Taiwan and the US, frankly, cannot compete with,” D’Sola said. “When you talk about investment in infrastructure, investment in green development, these are the types of foreign direct investments that these countries are looking for in the international arena.”

He also stated that China is “gaining ground” in these countries due to a lack of alternatives, such as economic support from the United States or the European Union.

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China Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Wang Wenbin praised Castro’s declaration, saying Honduras was making the “right choice” that was “in line with the trend of historical development and progress of the times.”

Meanwhile, Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu advised Honduras not to “fall into China’s trap,” adding that the country was still striving to maintain bilateral ties. It also met with Harold Burgos, Honduras’ ambassador to Taiwan, to express “grave concern.”

Yet, by early Thursday, Wu had confessed that the situation was not hopeful.

“They have asked for a high price from us,” Wu told reporters in parliament, referring to the Honduran government. “Because we don’t compete with China in dollar diplomacy, so it has entered a very difficult stage. But all the colleagues at our embassy in Honduras are working hard and will work hard until the last moment.”

Wu also stated that China has been working worldwide to restrict Taiwan and that Taiwan would continue to build its international footprint.

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