US envoy nominee promises support for Taiwan

Potential US envoy to Marshall Islands vows to strengthen relations between Taiwan and its Pacific ally

Roxanne Cabral at the ambassador nomination hearing. (CNA photo)

Roxanne Cabral at the ambassador nomination hearing. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Roxanne Cabral, the nominee for U.S. ambassador to the Marshall Islands and current representative to Panama, promised on Tuesday (Oct. 29) to protect Taiwan and its Pacific ally against China's predatory economics.

During her Senate nomination hearing, Cabral emphasized that the Marshall Islands is an important diplomatic partner of Taiwan and serves a critical role in stabilizing Taiwan-China relations. She also pledged to help the U.S. improve its partnership with the Marshall Islands once her nomination is confirmed.

Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO), Mitt Romney (R-UT), and Todd Young (R-IN) expressed their concern for Taiwan's diplomatic situation after it recently lost two Pacific allies: the Solomon Islands and Kiribati. When asked about practical ways to prevent Taiwan from losing another Pacific ally, Cabral remarked that Marshallese President Hilda Heine just visited Taiwan last week and that the friendship between the two countries remains stable, reported UDN.

Cabral added that China has no real "allies," only countries that give in to its economic threats. She said she believes the U.S. has more to offer with the help of tools such as the Asia Reassurance Initiative Act.

Cabral has previously been assigned in Albania, Ukraine, and Guangzhou, China. She accepted the job of U.S. envoy to Panama in August 2017, right after Panama announced its diplomatic shift from Taiwan to China, according to CNA.