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Taiwan hosts European lawmakers from Switzerland and Finland in Taipei

Swiss and Finnish delegations will meet President Tsai, other top officials during their visits

A delegation from Finland is welcomed at Taoyuan airport on Sunday, Feb. 5. (MOFA photo) 

A delegation from Finland is welcomed at Taoyuan airport on Sunday, Feb. 5. (MOFA photo) 

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan welcomed two separate delegations from European nations on Sunday (Feb. 5).

A delegation of Swiss lawmakers arrived as expected in Taipei this weekend. To the surprise of many, a second delegation from Finland also arrived in Taipei on Sunday, as revealed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) in a Twitter post.

“We extend our warmest welcome and best wishes to the (Swiss parliament’s) Taiwan friendship group heads,” said the MOFA post. The delegation is led by Fabian Molina and Nicolas Walder, who are the co-chairs of the parliamentary intergroup for Switzerland-Taiwan relations.

The Swiss delegation, which also includes lawmakers Yves Nideggar, Mustafa Atici, and Leonore Porchet, will meet with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) during their six-day visit. They are also expected to visit Kinmen and the Hsinchu Science Park during the trip.

The Finnish delegation, which was not previously announced by the ministry, will remain in Taiwan until Thursday (Feb. 9). It is led by Mikko Kärnä, the chairman of the Finnish Parliament’s Taiwan Friendship Group and is the first visit by Finnish officials since the outbreak of the pandemic, according to a MOFA press release.

“The visit by the Taiwan-Finland parliamentary friendship group demonstrates the strong synergy between like-minded states. We wish our fellow defenders of democracy a successful five-day stay,” said MOFA in a Twitter post.

The Finnish delegation is also scheduled to meet with President Tsai and other top officials to discuss issues of regional security and bilateral exchange. The Finnish group will also visit Hsinchu Science Park, as well as a cultural site in the southern city of Kaohsiung, according to the press release.