Taiwan’s new President Lai in his inauguration speech urges China to stop its military intimidation : The Tribune India

Join Whatsapp Channel

Taiwan’s new President Lai in his inauguration speech urges China to stop its military intimidation

Lai is a relative moderate who will continue Taiwan’s policy of de facto independence while seeking to bolster its defences against China

Taiwan’s new President Lai in his inauguration speech urges China to stop its military intimidation

Taiwan's new President Lai Ching-te during the inauguration ceremony outside the Presidential office building in Taipei, Taiwan, on May 20, 2024. Reuters



AP

Taipei, May 20

Taiwan’s new President Lai Ching-te in his inauguration speech has urged China to stop its military intimidation against the self-governed island Beijing claims as its own territory.

Lai was sworn into office in a ceremony on Monday after he won an election earlier this year.

He is a relative moderate who will continue Taiwan’s policy of de facto independence while seeking to bolster its defences against China.

He takes over from Tsai Ing-wen, who led Taiwan through eight years of economic and social development despite the COVID-19 pandemic and China’s escalating military threats.

Thousands of people gathered in front of the Presidential Office Building in Taipei for the inauguration ceremony.

Donning white bucket hats, the attendees watched on large screens the ceremony’s emcees narrating Lai’s swearing-in ceremony, followed by a military march and colourful artistic performances featuring folk dancers, opera performers and rappers. Military helicopters flew in formation, carrying Taiwan’s flag.

Lai accepted congratulations from fellow politicians and delegations from the 12 nations that maintain official diplomatic relations with Taiwan, as well as politicians from the US, Japan and various European states.

Lai, also known by his English name William, has vowed to continue his predecessor’s push to maintain stability with China while beefing up Taiwan’s security through imports of advanced fighters and other technology from close partner the US, the expansion of the defence industry with the manufacture of submarines and aircraft, and the reinforcing of regional partnerships with Taiwan’s unofficial allies such as the US, Japan, South Korea and the Philippines.

US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken congratulated Lai on his inauguration.

“We look forward to working with President Lai and across Taiwan’s political spectrum to advance our shared interests and values, deepen our longstanding unofficial relationship, and maintain peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” Blinken said in a statement from his office.

Lai, 64, takes over from Tsai Ing-wen, who led Taiwan through eight years of economic and social development despite the COVID-19 pandemic and China’s escalating military threats.

He is seen as inheriting her progressive policies, including universal health care, backing for higher education and support for minority groups, including making Taiwan the first place in Asia to recognize same-sex marriages.

Lai, who was vice president during Tsai’s second term, came across as more of a firebrand earlier in his career. In 2017, he described himself as a “pragmatic worker for Taiwan’s independence,” drawing Beijing’s rebuke. He has since softened his stance and now supports maintaining the status quo across the Taiwan Strait and the possibility of talks with Beijing.

Beijing claims Taiwan as its own territory and has been upping its threats to annex it by force if necessary.

Lai will build on Tsai’s efforts to strengthen ties with the US, which doesn’t formally recognise Taiwan as a country but is bound by its own laws to provide the island with the means to defend itself.

During Tsai’s tenure, Taiwan became the first society in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage, though critics say she skirted political responsibility by leaving the decision up to the Supreme Court and a series of referendums.

She oversaw a controversial pension and labour reform and extended the military conscription length to one year. She also kickstarted a military modernisation drive, including a program for building indigenous submarines at more than USD 16 billion each.

Tsai’s leadership during the pandemic split public opinion, with most admiring Taiwan’s initial ability to keep the virus largely outside its borders but criticising the lack of investment in rapid testing as the pandemic progressed. 

#China #Taiwan


Top News

ED challenges Arvind Kejriwal's bail, as Delhi CM to leave jail today

Arvind Kejriwal to remain in jail as Delhi High Court grants interim stay on trial court's bail order

The AAP national convenor, who was arrested on March 21 by t...

NEET-UG 2024: Supreme Court refuses to stay counselling process; issues notice to National Testing Agency, others

NEET row: Supreme Court refuses to defer counselling; 1,563 students to take exam again on Sunday

The Congress, meanwhile, stages protests across the country ...

NTA postpones CSIR-UGC-NET examination due to ‘unavoidable circumstances and logistical reasons’

NTA postpones CSIR-UGC-NET examination due to ‘unavoidable circumstances and logistical reasons’

The joint CSIR-UGC-NET exam is for the eligibility of candid...

India criticises Canadian parliament observing ‘one-minute silence’ in memory of Hardeep Nijjar

India criticises Canadian parliament observing ‘one-minute silence’ in memory of Hardeep Nijjar

In an unusual move, the Canadian parliament observed ‘one-mi...

Swiss court sentences 4 members of Hinduja family to up to 4.5 years for exploiting their servants

Swiss court sentences 4 members of Hinduja family to up to 4 and a half years for exploiting their servants

The four—Indian-born tycoon Prakash Hinduja and his wife, so...


Cities

View All