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Taiwan hopes to see closer collaboration with Baltic nations

As she received visiting lawmakers from Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, Tsai said it was the first time the parliaments of all three Baltic States had formed a joint delegation to visit Taiwan.

DPA WORLD
Published November 29,2021
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Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen said on Monday that Taiwan is looking forward to collaborating more closely with Baltic nations in efforts to strengthen democracy.

As she received visiting lawmakers from Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, Tsai said it was the first time the parliaments of all three Baltic States had formed a joint delegation to visit Taiwan.

Tsai also expressed her appreciation for what she called a "meaningful trip."

The delegation of 10 lawmakers arrived in Taipei on Sunday for the 2021 Open Parliament Forum scheduled on Thursday.

China this month officially downgraded its relationship with Lithuania to the "charge d'affaires" level due to its recent closer interactions with Taiwan.

"This month, the Taiwanese Representative Office in Lithuania officially opened. We expect Lithuania to establish its representative office in Taiwan early next year," Tsai said.

Matas Maldeikis, chairman of the Lithuanian parliament's Taiwan Friendship Group, said that the Baltic country's policy toward Taiwan is widely supported by its public.

"Preserving freedom and rule-based international order is a vital interest for both Taiwan and Lithuania," Maldeikis said.

China sent 27 warplanes to Taiwan's air defence zone on Sunday, the day the Baltic delegation arrived. The daytime flyby of Chinese warplanes was the biggest since October 4, when a record 52 aircraft were detected near Taiwan.

Taiwan has had an independent government since 1949, but China considers the democratic island part of its territory and opposes any form of official contacts between Taiwan and other countries.