Contact Us

Blinken congratulates Taiwan's Lai on inauguration as president

Published May 20,2024

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken congratulated Taiwan's newly inaugurated President Lai Ching-te late Sunday, saying he looked forward to Washington and Taipei maintaining "peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait."

Lai was sworn in early Monday Taiwan time and will face rising geo-political turbulence in the region, with Chinese military pressure building and tense Washington-Beijing relations.

In addition to hailing Lai, "we also congratulate the Taiwan people for once again demonstrating the strength of their robust and resilient democratic system," Blinken said in a statement.

"The partnership between the American people and the Taiwan people, rooted in democratic values, continues to broaden and deepen across trade, economic, cultural, and people-to-people ties," the top US diplomat added.

He also commended outgoing president Tsai Ing-wen for "strengthening ties" between the United States and Taiwan over the past eight years.

"We look forward to working with President Lai and across Taiwan's political spectrum to advance our shared interests and values, deepen our longstanding unofficial relationship, and maintain peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait."

Blinken's statement came as China said Monday it would sanction three US defence companies over their sales of arms to Taiwan.

Washington switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing in 1979 but it has remained Taiwan's most important partner and biggest arms supplier.