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Taiwan foreign ministry calls China's downgrade of Lithuania relations 'arrogant and petty'

MOFA says Taiwanese Representative Office in Lithuania aims to deepen bilateral cooperation

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Eric Huang (third from right) poses with other staffers outside Taiwanese Representative Office in Vilnius, Lithuania, on Nov. 18, 2021.

Eric Huang (third from right) poses with other staffers outside Taiwanese Representative Office in Vilnius, Lithuania, on Nov. 18, 2021. (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Sunday (Nov. 21) praised Lithuania for defending its sovereignty and the values of freedom and democracy, adding that the two countries have continued to bolster exchanges and cooperation in different areas.

MOFA said via a press release that the main purpose of the recently opened Taiwanese Representative Office in Lithuania is to expand bilateral relations in economy and trade, science and technology, education, and culture, in addition to deepening people-to-people exchanges.

The ministry said it believes friendship between the two countries will grow stronger and that together they “will contribute to international peace, stability, and prosperity.”

MOFA said that Beijing’s claim that the "one China” principle is a universal consensus is a lie made up to facilitate annexing Taiwan. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has never ruled Taiwan, MOFA pointed out, adding that Taiwan exists in the international community and the Taiwanese government “exercises jurisdiction” over the nation.

The ministry also said China’s attempt to coerce Lithuania by downgrading relations with the Baltic nation to the level of charge d'affaires only shows the arrogance and pettiness of large, powerful countries.

Additionally, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) said that in the face of Lithuania's resistance to authoritarian expansion, the rest of the world has come to feel the same as MOFA, which is that China should not be so overbearing, the Liberty Times reported. Through its refusal to back down in the face of Chinese pressure, Lithuania has officially sent a message to the world, Wu said.

“We admire Lithuania's moral courage,” he added.