According to a report from CNN, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is expected to visit Taiwan during her trip through Asia this month, a senior Taiwanese government official and a US official confirmed. Members of China’s state-owned media have threatened Pelosi, going as far as to say her plane could be shot down.
If Pelosi ends up going through with the stop, she will be the first House Speaker to visit Taiwan in more than 25 years; the visit is not currently listed on her itinerary.
The issue of Taiwan — a self-governing island that China claims as a part of its territory — remains one of the most contentious. President Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping discussed it at length in a two-hour-and-17-minute phone call on Thursday, as tensions mounted between Washington and Beijing.
“The question of Taiwan is the most sensitive, important core issue in China-US relations,” said Chinese Ambassador to the US Qin Gang at the Aspen Security Forum in July.
Biden said last month that the US military opposed Pelosi visiting Taiwan, though since then has refused to elaborate on the warnings. The White House has said it is up to the House speaker where she travels, and that they have little say in her decision.
“I would say there’s been a full-court press from the Chinese embassy to discourage a trip to Taiwan,” Washington Democratic Rep. Rick Larsen, the co-chair of Congress’ US-China working group, told CNN. “I just don’t think it’s their business to tell us what we ought to be doing. That was my message back.”
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US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is expected to visit Taiwan during her Asia trip, despite warnings from Biden officials worried about China's responsehttps://t.co/joU9Qyu92v
— CNN (@CNN) August 1, 2022