Burkina Faso cuts diplomatic ties with Taiwan after intense pressure from China
28 May, 2018, 14:01 | Author: Diane Mills
China and Burkina Faso on Saturday announced the resumption of diplomatic ties in a joint communique signed by Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Burkina Faso's Foreign Minister Alpha Barry in Beijing.
The communiqué said there was only one China, that Taiwan was an inseparable part of China, and that Burkina Faso would not have official ties with Taiwan.
Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) chief Chen Ming-tung (陳明通) criticized the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) on Friday after a recent diplomatic setback for Taiwan, saying the formula it advocated for relations with China will not work.
"I want to tell my people that China's outrageous acts of suppressing Taiwan's sovereignty have already challenged the bottom line of Taiwanese society".
Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu, who tendered his resignation, said: "China grabbing our allies and giving us pressure in the diplomatic space will not shrink the distance across the [Taiwan] strait and will not let cross-strait relations walk on a peaceful, friendly path". Taipei also said it would end its assistance to the West African nation, halt all bilateral cooperative projects, and close its embassy there.
It is the second time Burkina has cut ties with Taiwan. China claims the island as its sacred territory and has vowed not to allow any attempts at what it views as Taiwan separatism.
"I want to emphasize again that China's pressure will only lead to Taiwan's ties with its partners in the global community getting closer".
Beijing has raised the pressure on Tsai, whose government refuses to acknowledge that Taiwan - whose democratic freedoms stand in stark contrast to Communist-ruled China - is part of a "one China".
Taiwan has accused China of luring its friends away with offers of generous aid packages.
Barry said a delegation of Chinese experts would visit in the coming days to assess the county's needs for development assistance, hopefully in time for an agreement by September when President Roch Marc Kabore would be in Beijing for a summit between China and African leaders.
The statement released by the Chinese foreign ministry read: "We welcome Burkina Faso's early accession to the Sino-African friendship and cooperation family based on the one-China principle".
Burkina is the fifth country to cut ties with Taiwan since Tsai came to office, following the Dominican Republic, Gambia, Sao Tome and Principe and Panama.
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