Taiwan Loses Nicaragua as Ally as Tensions With China Rise

Taiwan Loses Nicaragua as Ally as Tensions With China Rise

Now, solely 13 nations and the Vatican nonetheless acknowledge Taiwan, down from 21 in all at first of 2017. Since then, Panama, the Dominican Republic, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Kiribati, the Solomon Islands and now Nicaragua have switched their recognition to the People’s Republic of China. China has sought to maintain Taiwan remoted, even barring it from collaborating in worldwide boards just like the World Health Assembly, in hopes of forcing it to simply accept unification with the mainland as an inevitability.

“While this will be disappointing for Taiwan, it’s important to keep it in perspective,” mentioned Natasha Kassam, a former Australian diplomat in Beijing who’s now with the Lowy Institute, an unbiased analysis group in Sydney. “In recent years, Taiwan has been growing its ties with unofficial large partners like Japan and the United States, and those are much more important for Taiwan’s place in the world than its smaller diplomatic partners.”

Within minutes of Nicaragua’s announcement, Chinese state media reported {that a} delegation of Nicaraguan officers have been in Tianjin, the port metropolis the place China has been holding diplomatic conferences throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Their presence indicated coordination between the 2 nations over the timing of the choice.

Nicaragua ended diplomatic relations as soon as earlier than, in 1985, after Mr. Ortega first got here to energy, however reversed that call 5 years later, below President Violeta Chamorro.

The newest swap got here a month after Mr. Ortega was re-elected for a fourth consecutive time period as president after a vote that was broadly criticized for consolidating his more and more authoritarian rule.

China’s ambassador to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, counseled Nicaragua’s resolution as one “in line with the prevailing trend of the time and people’s aspiration.”

“The One-China principle is a consensus widely accepted by the international community and allows no challenge,” Mr. Zhang wrote on Twitter, which is banned in China.

Amy Chang Chien and Claire Fu contributed reporting and analysis.

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