Asia Pacific

Taiwan loses second diplomatic ally in a week as Kiribati cuts ties

AP

The Pacific island nation of Kiribati has cut diplomatic ties with Taiwan, the second country to do so this week.

Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said Friday that Kiribati had officially notified his government of the decision.

Kiribati will presumably recognize China after cutting ties with diplomatically isolated Taiwan.

China has persuaded seven former Taiwanese allies to switch allegiance since 2016, when President Tsai Ing-wen took office in Taipei.

Wu said that the Taiwanese people would not bow to China’s pressure. China considers Taiwan a part of its territory and wants the island to reunite with the mainland. The two split in 1949.

The cut in ties comes four days after the Solomon Islands, once Taiwan’s largest ally in the South Pacific, severed ties with Taiwan in favor of China.

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