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Dominican Republic ambassador makes personal apology over diplomatic cut with Taiwan

Following an announcement from the Dominican Republic government, Taiwan's Foreign Minister declared the immediate termination of the diplomatic relations between the two countries on Tuesday morning

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President Tsai Ing-wen mets with Dominican Republic Ambassador Jose Miguel Soto Jimenez in 2017 (Photo courtesy of the Presidential Office)

President Tsai Ing-wen mets with Dominican Republic Ambassador Jose Miguel Soto Jimenez in 2017 (Photo courtesy of the Presidential Office)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The ambassador of the Dominican Republic to Taiwan was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) Tuesday shortly after Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) announced the immediate termination of the diplomatic relations between the two countries at a news conference.

The Caribbean country announced on April 30 that it would establish diplomatic ties with China and recognize Taiwan as an “inalienable part of Chinese territory.” The announcement came just about one hour after Taiwan’s ambassador to the Dominican Republic Tang Ji-zen (湯繼仁) was officially informed by the Dominican Republic deputy foreign minister of the matter.

José Liu (劉德立), Taiwan’s vice foreign minister, met with Miguel Ángel Soto Jiménez, the Dominican Republic ambassador, at MOFA, after the news conference on Tuesday.

Liu expressed the protest of the Taiwan government against the Caribbean country for bowing to the enticement of Beijing's monetary assistance and thus ignoring 77 years of diplomatic relations between Taiwan and the Dominican Republic.

Furthermore, Liu also condemned the government of the Dominican Republic for the abrupt notice to Taiwanese officials nearly one hour before its official announcement, saying the act was “extremely unfriendly”.

According to the statement from MOFA, Soto Jimenez responded that he would convey the protest of the Taiwan government back to the Dominican Republic. Both countries would soon commence negotiations on the closure of the embassies as well as the repatriation of officials and possessions.

Soto Jimenez, who has been posted to Taiwan since last July and met with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), expressed a wish to make a personal apology as he considers himself a friend of Taiwan, says the MOFA statement.

Soto Jimenez also told the vice foreign minister that he only learnt of his government's decision to cut ties with Taiwan on Tuesday morning at 8 a.m.

Taiwan currently has only 19 diplomatic allies around the world. The country's foreign minister told reporters at the news conference that “in spite of the special case of the Dominican Republic, Taiwan's relations with the remaining allies are stable so far.”


Updated : 2021-07-30 03:54 GMT+08:00