Three US senators namely Democratic Tammy Duckworth of Illinois, along with fellow Democrat Christopher Coons of Delaware and Republican Dan Sullivan of Alaska arrived at Taiwan for a 3 hour stop, as part of the Indo-pacific trip. Foreign Minister Joseph Wu, welcomed the senators at the airport, said that Taiwan is fortunate to have like-minded countries showing support, which he said is move towards sustaining freedom and democracy in the face of totalitarianism.
The US senators showed their strong support towards the island and said that US will stand with the people of Taiwan and will help them to the best of their capabilities to fight this pandemic. The island of 24 million has been facing acute shortage of vaccines after a sudden outbreak of the Covid-19 in April.
Taiwan was included in the COVAX- UN backed program last week which aims to provide vaccines to low and middle- income countries. This initiative will help Taiwan receive 25 million doses as part of the US first tranche of global distribution, though the date of arrival of the vaccines has not been decided yet.
China is likely to be rattled by this meet, since they claim the island as their own region and has been trying to block Taiwan’s international assistance and hamper its participation in the World Health Organisation. In the recent months, China’s communist party has increased the pressure on the island, including flying warplanes near Taiwan causing grave concerns for the island’s security.
President Tsai Ing-wen, expressed his gratitude towards the US government for including Taiwan in the first group to get the vaccines. US has no formal diplomatic ties with Taiwan, but is its most important international backer and supplier of arms.