TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The new president of the Czech Senate, Miloš Vystrčil, has hinted that the more China issues threats, the more he is likely to visit Taiwan.
His predecessor, Jaroslav Kubera, passed away in January as he was preparing to make a trip to the island. While Prague maintains official diplomatic relations with China, relations with the country have become strained, while ties with Taiwan have strengthened.
After a meeting Wednesday (May 20), Vystrčil accused China of interfering in the Czech Republic’s domestic affairs, a reference to a letter the Chinese embassy sent Kubera threatening repercussions for Czech businesses if he visited Taiwan, CNA reported. Kubera’s family recently claimed the letter contributed to the Senate leader’s death.
The Chinese embassy’s threatening attitude has not changed since then, Vystrčil said, as it has protested his expression of gratitude for Taiwan’s donation of face masks and his appearance in the same photo as a Taiwanese flag.
The Chinese embassy reportedly also phoned his office to warn him against congratulating President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) on her May 20 inauguration for a second term.
The Czech politician said that the more China tried to dictate what his country should or should not do, the more likely he would be to travel to Taiwan, CNA reported.