China opens ties with Honduras, Taiwan decries monetary demands

World
2023-03-26 | 06:24
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China opens ties with Honduras, Taiwan decries monetary demands
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China opens ties with Honduras, Taiwan decries monetary demands

China established diplomatic ties with Honduras on Sunday after the Central American country ended its decades-long relationship with Taiwan, while Taiwan's foreign minister accused Honduras of demanding exorbitant sums before being lured away by Beijing.

The ending of ties with Taiwan had been expected after the Honduran foreign minister traveled to China last week to open relations and President Xiomara Castro said her government would start ties with Beijing.

China said its foreign minister, Qin Gang, and Honduran Foreign Minister Eduardo Enrique Reina signed the deal on diplomatic recognition in Beijing, ending relations with Taiwan dating back to the 1940s.

In a brief statement late on Saturday, the Honduran foreign ministry said it recognized the People's Republic of China as the only legitimate government that represents all of China and that Taiwan is an "inseparable part of Chinese territory".

China claims democratically ruled Taiwan as its own territory with no right to state-to-state ties, a position Taipei strongly rejects. China demands that countries with which it has ties to recognize its position.

Speaking in Taipei, Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said Castro, who took office early last year, and her government had "always had illusions" about China and China's "luring" had never stopped.

"The foreign ministry and embassy grasped the relevant information and handled it carefully. However, the Castro government also asked us for billions of dollars in huge economic assistance and compared prices for assistance programs provided by Taiwan and China," Wu said.

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen said in a video statement that Taiwan will not compete with China in "meaningless" dollar diplomacy.

"Taiwan's people have proved to the world that we never cower from threats. Taiwan's cooperation and links with allies and like-minded countries to jointly promote international well-being and security will only increase, not decrease," she said.

Qin told Reina Honduran companies were invited to come to China to discuss trade and investment, while Reina said Honduras was willing to strengthen cooperation with China in finance, trade and infrastructure, China's Foreign Ministry said in a statement. 

Reina wrote to Taiwan this month asking for almost $2.5 billion in aid, including a loan of $2 billion to help write off debt as well as funds for the construction of a hospital and a dam, according to copy of the letter seen by Reuters. The letter addressed Wu as "a friend".

"It felt like what they wanted was money, not a hospital," Wu told reporters.

Reuters 
 

World

China

Chinese

Relations

Honduras

Taiwan

Monetary

Demands

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