TAIPEI (Taiwan News) - U.S. Senator Marco Rubio said Tuesday he worried that Paraguay could be the next country to sever ties with Taiwan. However, Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Wednesday that the country will continue to consolidate ties with foreign allies, and the relationship with Paraguay has remained solid.
Rubio expressed woes Tuesday at a Senate subcommittee hearing on U.S. leadership in the Asia-Pacific region that Paraguay could be the next ally breaking ties with Taiwan in favor of China, and he questioned whether Washington had clearly expressed its concerns toward Honduras, Guatemala, and Paraguay.
Alex Wong, a deputy assistant secretary in the U.S. State Department's Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, told a CNA reporter that the U.S. values the status quo as it is a key to maintain peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.
Wong continued to say that any attempt to snag Taiwan's allies away will be considered as challenging the status quo.
Andrew Lee (李憲章), the spokesperson for MOFA, told Taiwanese media that ties with Paraguay have remained strong and the bilateral projects of education, culture, and technology have been profiting from the relationship. Lee thanked the U.S. Senator for his support and condemned Beijing's act s for complicating the situation in the Asia-Pacific region.
Paraguay is one of Taiwan's 19 allies remaining following the recent break with the Dominican Republic and the only one in South America.