Amid rising tensions between Beijing and Washington, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-Wen is set to visit New York and Southern California by the end of this month, The Washington Post reported citing a spokesperson from Taiwan’s office of the president.
Tsai will travel from 29 March to 7 April, making a detour in New York before continuing on to Guatemala and Belize and Los Angeles on the way back, the spokesperson said. The schedule of Tsai’s meetings with US government representatives, including US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, is unknown.
The visit of Tsai comes after the announcement of Taiwan’s former President Ma Ying-jeou’s historic visit to the Chinese mainland next week.
Ma is a leader in the opposition Kuomintang, or Nationalist, Party, which favours closer ties with Beijing.
Tsai will be making her seventh trip to the country since taking office in 2016.
However, the Chinese Foreign Ministry officials have said that Beijing “firmly opposes any form of official interaction between the US and the Taiwan region,” The Washington Post reported on Tuesday.
Taiwan has never been governed by the Chinese Communist Party, but Beijing claims it is a part of its territory and seeks “peaceful reunification” with Taiwan.
Notably, tensions started between China and Taiwan after the US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi travelled to Taiwan in August last year.
China raised objections to Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, which China claims as part of its territory. China announced military drills around Taiwan over Pelosi’s visit to the island.