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Taiwan's Tsai: no major policy shifts, despite Trump call

Tuesday, December 6, 2016 - 23:06

[WASHINGTON] Taiwan President Tsai Ing Wen said she does not anticipate any major policy shifts affecting the region despite her unprecedented call with US President-elect Donald Trump that deeply rankled China, according to media reports on Tuesday.

In a meeting with a small group of American reporters, Ms Tsai played down the significance of the exchange last Friday with Mr Trump. The telephone call was the first with a US president-elect or president since President Jimmy Carter switched diplomatic recognition to China from Taiwan in 1979.

The call prompted a diplomatic protest from Beijing on Saturday and, on Monday, reassurance from the Obama administration that Washington is committed to the "One China" policy. China regards Taiwan as a renegade province.

"I have to stress that one phone call does not mean a policy shift," Ms Tsai told reporters from US outlets that included USA Today, National Public Radio and The Washington Post.

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"I do not foresee major policy shifts in the near future because we all see the value of stability in the region," she added, according to the reports.

Ms Tsai added: "The phone call was a way for us to express our respect for the US election as well as congratulate President-elect Trump on his win".

Republican, Mr Trump, a real estate developer who has never previously held public office, takes office on Jan 20 after winning the Nov 8 election.

In a statement on the meeting with journalists, Ms Tsai's office made no mention of her remarks regarding the call with Mr Trump.

Instead, it said Ms Tsai told journalists that Taiwan and the United States shared many common values and that Taiwan was a major market for US exports.

REUTERS

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