Azar landed at an airport in the capital Taipei, where he was received by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Tien Chung-kwang. Due to the corona crisis, no hands could be shaken during the reception. Those present also wore masks, including Minister Azar.
The multi-day visit of the top official, who will also meet with President Tsai Ing-wen, is very sensitive. China does not want de facto independent Taiwan to have diplomatic relations with other countries. Beijing has called on the US to refrain from such official visits.
Azar’s visit is precisely intended to strengthen ties with Taiwan. According to observers, that island has taken effective action against the corona virus. Only 480 infections have been reported in the country of approximately 23 million inhabitants. The US, in turn, leads the list of countries with the most corona cases.
The relationship between the US and China has cooled down recently. The superpowers are arguing about, among other things, the approach to the corona crisis, the situation in Hong Kong and the 5G market.
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