Nicaragua sever ties with Taiwan: “There is only one China in the world”
- BBC News World
“There is only one China in the world,” Nicaragua’s foreign minister told a news conference on Thursday.
In a statement read by Minister Denis Moncota, the government of Daniel Ortega announced its decision to sever its long-standing diplomatic ties with Taiwan to ensure its loyalty to Beijing.
“The only legitimate government that represents the whole of China is the People’s Republic of China, and Taiwan is an inseparable part of the whole of China,” the letter said.
Nicaragua “is severing diplomatic relations with Taiwan as of today and suspending any contact or official relationship,” he added.
The Nicaraguan government established diplomatic relations with Taiwan, withdrew from China in the 1990s, defeating Daniel Ortega’s Sandinista regime in a referendum and holding the Violeta Zamoro regime.
Until a few months ago, Ortega had maintained close cooperative relations with Taipei since returning to government in 2007.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry praised Nicaragua’s decision and re-established diplomatic relations with the Central American country, Reuters reported, citing Chinese state media.
“Painful and regrettable”
Taiwan, for its part, described the Nicaraguan decision as “painful,” the news agency said. Reuters.
“My country has decided to sever diplomatic relations with the Republic of Nicaragua in order to protect sovereignty and national dignity,” the Taiwan Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
“From now on, bilateral cooperation and assistance programs will be suspended and the Taiwan embassy staff and technical team will be evacuated,” he added.
Cooperation between the two countries mainly focuses on health, agriculture and community housing issues. Many Taiwanese companies have established themselves in Nicaragua since the 1990s.
“Taiwan has always been a loyal and trusted friend of Nicaragua,” said the Taiwanese foreign minister, who confirmed that the Ordega government had “neglected many years of friendship between the people of Taiwan and Nicaragua”, which was “very unfortunate”.
Nicaragua’s decision has only 14 formal diplomatic allies in Taiwan, up from 21 before Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen took office in May 2016.
Honduras, Guatemala and Belize are Taiwan’s last allies in Central America.
However, Honduras’ newly elected President Siomaro Castro, who will take office on January 27, promised during his campaign to sever ties with Taiwan in support of Beijing, although he did not repeat this promise after the election.
Chinese nationalist troops took refuge in Taiwan in 1949 after being defeated by the Communists. Since then, the Chinese government sees Taiwan as a separatist province that will soon reunite with the mainland.
Although many Taiwanese insist they want to be free, Beijing insists that both people belong to the same Chinese family and that Taiwan’s independence is not possible.
This tension between the two countries has infiltrated world politics and has become almost an indicator of the status and movements of international relations.
Tension for Nicaragua
The decision of the government of Daniel Ortega takes place against the backdrop of tension for the Central American nation.
Three weeks ago, Nicaragua announces withdrawal from US state body (OAS), accused of acting contrary to its policies, after the organization approved a resolution condemning the presidential election in early November.
Ortega was re-elected for the fourth time in a row with 75% of the vote, while the majority of the opposition was detained or forced to deport.
The OAS questioned the election and said at the time that “they are not free, fair or transparent, and they have no democratic legitimacy”.
Both the OAS and the European Union (EU) have demanded the release of hundreds of civilians.
US President Joe Biden has described such elections as a “pantomime” that has heightened tensions between the two countries.
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