US Texas Senator Ted Cruz Meets Taiwan President, Lambasts China

By | Jan 09, 2017 01:43 AM EST
US Texas Senator Ted Cruz Meets Taiwan President

US Texas senator Ted Cruz and Governor Greg Abbott met with Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen on Sunday during her transit stopover in Houston. After the meeting, Cruz blasted to China for pressuring them to call off the meeting. (Photo : Getty Images)

In an outright challenge to China, US Texas senator Ted Cruz along with Governor Greg Abbott met with Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen on Sunday during her transit stopover in Houston. The transit stopover in the US was an important itinerary to the Taiwanese leader's weeklong tour to Central America.

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Cruz issued a critical statement immediately after his meeting with Tsai where he lambasted China for pressurizing Houston's congressional delegation to call off their meeting with Taiwanese leader.

"The People's Republic of China (PRC) needs to understand that in America we make decisions about meeting with visitors for ourselves," Cruz said in a statement.  

"This is not about the PRC. This is about the US relationship with Taiwan, an ally we are legally bound to defend. The Chinese do not give us veto power over those with whom they meet. We will continue to meet with anyone, including the Taiwanese, as we see fit."

Cruz outlined issues that were discussed during his hour-long meeting with Tsai. This included issues like arms sales and economic relations as the US senator hoped for trade relations between Texas and Taiwan market.  

In a separate statement issued by Abbott, he said that his meeting with Taiwan's president stressed on issues like agriculture, gas trade, and energy cooperation.  

No Meeting Between Trump and Tsai

China will certainly breathe sigh of relief that the US President-elect Donald Trump did not meet with the Taiwanese president during her transit stopover. There are also less chances of possible meeting between the two leaders while Tsai will again make a transit stopover during her return journey.

Trump had already categorically stated that he will not be meeting the Taiwanese leader due to diplomatic protocol. As per American diplomatic procedure, the US president-elect cannot meet any important leader before his official coronation.

Trump is scheduled to assume the office as the 45th President of United States of America on Jan. 20.                 

China Uncomfortable by Trump's Overtures Towards Taiwan  

Meanwhile, Trump may have already set a tenor for an uncomfortable relation with Beijing by offering unexpected overtures towards the island nation.

Barely weeks after his stunning victory, the US Republican broke diplomatic protocol by accepting a phone call from Taiwanese president Tsai. He became the first US president to make such a move since US' official recognition of 'One China' policy in 1979.

While this was not enough, Trump, almost a week later, sent another shockwave to Beijing by questioning the US government's commitment to 'One China' policy while urging them to use the policy as a bargaining chip.

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