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Taiwan and U.S. National Security chiefs meet for first time since 1979

John Bolton and David Lee met during the latter's recent U.S. trip

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – For the first time since Taiwan and the United States ended formal diplomatic relations in 1979, the two countries’ national security chiefs, David Lee (李大維) and John Bolton, met each other, reports said Saturday (May 25).

The meeting occurred during National Security Council Secretary General Lee’s May 13-31 visit to the U.S., the Central News Agency reported. Apart from National Security Adviser Bolton, Lee also exchanged views with experts at various prominent think tanks and universities.

During meetings with U.S. officials, representatives of Taiwanese diplomatic allies were also present to hear Lee confirm the island nation’s support for a free Indo-Pacific, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Media reports speculated that the representatives hailed from Palau and the Marshall Islands, two island nations in the Pacific, where China has been trying to expand its influence at Taiwan’s expense.

Following Lee’s trip, Taiwan announced Saturday that it had changed the official name of its body managing relations with Washington from Coordination Council for North American Affairs (CCNAA) to Taiwan Council for U.S. Affairs (TCUSA).