US House reaffirms support for countries of South Pacific in face of Chinese threat

H.Res.1157 expresses concern over China's creeping influence in the region, and recognizes Beijing's campaign to suppress Taiwan internationally

U.S. House of Representatives Chamber

U.S. House of Representatives Chamber (By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday, Dec. 11 unanimously agreed to a resolution that calls for the United States reaffirm and continue its support for nations of the South Pacific region, in the face of China’s creeping influence.

House Resolution 1157 outlines China’s concerning activities in the region and reaffirms support for continued engagement and cooperation with countries in the South Pacific.

The resolution also recognizes that Taiwan is a target of a Chinese campaign to suppress the country’s activity internationally, containing this text.

“China continues to shrink the number of Taiwan’s international partners around the globe by inducing countries to switch recognition through financial incentives and six of Taiwan’s remaining diplomatic allies in the Pacific Islands region advocate on Taiwan’s behalf at the United Nations and other international fora.”

The resolution also outlines several other areas of concern involving Chinese actions in the South Pacific region noting that increasing “Chinese military presence in the region” could threaten the U.S. military, as well as allies.

The resolution also expresses concern for Chinese investment and loans across the region which factor into China’s Belt and Road Initiative.

The resolution was introduced to the House on Nov. 20, by Democratic Party Reresentative at Large, Madeleine Bordallo, representing Guam.

By unanimously agreeing to H.Res. 1157, the House calls for increased U.S. engagement and cooperation with nations of the South Pacific region, and for the U.S. government “to increase the frequency of high-level bilateral and multilateral visits with leaders of Pacific Islands.”