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US State Department Cancels UN Envoy’s Trip to Taiwan

US State Department Cancels UN Envoy’s Trip to Taiwan”

But European diplomats and other people familiar with the matter said Luxembourg's foreign minister and top European Union officials had declined to meet with him during his planned European trip this week.

The top USA diplomat was scheduled to see NATO's secretary-general and Belgium's foreign minister in Brussels, according to the State Department.

The extraordinary snub of the US President came days after the storming of the US Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump, an unprecedented attack on American democracy that stunned many world leaders and US allies.

Appalled by the deadly riot, Luxembourg foreign minister Jean Asselborn called Trump a "criminal" and "political pyromaniac" in a radio interview the next day.

The Tsai administration will prioritize its pursuit of a free trade agreement with the U.S. Although Tsai lifted restrictions on imports of U.S. pork and beef in August - a move that carried domestic political cost - it was unable to forge such a pact with Trump's trade negotiators.

In a statement, the U.S. State Department attributed the cancellations to transition work before President-elect Joe Biden takes office on January 20. Pompeo told The Washington Post he canceled the trip because he wants to make sure there is "a smooth and orderly transition process".

After Pompeo announced Craft's planned visit to Taiwan last week, the Chinese government warned the USA was playing with fire.

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During his tenure, Trump signed off on some $18 billion in big-ticket arms deals for Taiwan and ramped up the frequency of official visits, including sending a cabinet official a year ago, the highest-level delegation since 1979. A representative of China's mission to the United Nations in NY urged Washington to stop "creating obstacles" for the relationship between China and the United States.

That violence, fueled by Trump and other Republicans' weeks of attacks on the election's credibility, was met with widespread criticism by USA allies, including both Stoltenberg and Wilmès.

For the next USA administration, Nachman believes, the move could pose a challenge, by forcing the incoming secretary of state, Anthony Blinken, to address the issue of Taiwan in the first few weeks of the new administration.

But Biden, who favors a far less confrontational diplomatic style that Trump, has given few details on what his Taiwan policy might be.

Leaders of other top US allies said the same. "Doubts about the outcome of the election were stoked, and that set the atmosphere that made last night's events possible", German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday.

Beijing promptly warned Washington would "receive a resolute counterstrike from China" over the move and "pay a heavy price" if Craft visited.



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