Xi Whistles in the Wind

Xi Whistles in the Wind

What you need to know

China's president is trying to play the referee over the Taiwan Travel Act, but is he holding the right cards?

U.S. President Donald Trump signed the Taiwan Travel Act (TTA) into law on March 16, 2018 – a carefully-worded agreement that opens the door for bilateral meetings between high-level officials from Taiwan and the US.

China's President Xi Jinping responded with a speech to the National People's Congress on March 20, saying, “All acts and schemes to split China are doomed to failure and will be condemned by the people and punished by history."

Xi's attempt to call foul didn't stop the play, however.

On the evening of the 21st, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and U.S. diplomat Alex Wong spoke at an event hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce. Wong, the deputy assistant secretary in the U.S. State Department's Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, insisted that the meeting was unrelated to the TTA's passage.

While the TTA's ramifications are still being debated, it seems that the closer ties between the U.S. and Taiwan are here to stay.

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