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Foreign ministry discourages Taiwanese from joining Ukrainian foreign legion

Spokesperson says Taiwanese desire to help 'understandable,' but safety takes priority

MOFA Spokeswoman Joanne Ou. (MOFA image)

MOFA Spokeswoman Joanne Ou. (MOFA image)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Thursday (March 3) discouraged Taiwanese from traveling to Ukraine to join its recently established International Legion of Territorial Defense.

In response to media inquiries about Taiwanese potentially going to Ukraine to fight the invading Russians, MOFA spokesperson Joanne Ou (歐江安) said the government is focused on protecting the safety of its nationals and advised them not to go to the embattled East European nation.

However, she said the government understands the sentiment of Taiwanese who want to support Ukraine. The Liberty Times reported that the Polish representative office in Taiwan declined to comment on Taiwanese signing up for Ukraine's foreign legion, and it neither confirmed nor denied that any Taiwanese had called to inquire about joining.

Ou said Taiwan strongly condemns Russia for waging a war that violates the UN Charter and invading Ukraine. In order to pressure Russia to cease its military aggression, Taiwan will take part in the economic sanctions imposed on Moscow by the international community, she said.

The spokesperson added that Taiwan will continue to coordinate closely with the U.S. and other like-minded nations on taking “appropriate countermeasures” to help Ukraine avoid the “curse of war” as soon as possible and restore regional and global peace and stability.

Ou pointed out that Taiwan has donated 27 tons of humanitarian aid to Ukraine.