Diplomatic incident between China and Lithuania due to Taiwanese embassy in Vilnius – RT en français
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Announced this summer, the opening of a Taiwanese embassy in Vilnius continues to test the dialogue between China and Lithuania. This northern European country has just reacted to a downgrading of its diplomatic relations with Beijing.
Lithuania said on November 21 that it regretted China’s decision to limit diplomatic ties with Vilnius after Taiwan established a de facto embassy there.
“Lithuania reaffirms adherence to ‘One China’ policy, but at the same time has the right to expand cooperation with Taiwan [y compris par l’établissement de missions non-diplomatiques]The Lithuanian Foreign Ministry said in a statement quoted by AFP.
A few hours earlier, China had officially downgraded its diplomatic relations with Lithuania to the rank of “charge d’affaires”. “The Chinese government had to lower diplomatic relations between the two countries […] in order to safeguard its sovereignty and the fundamental norms of international relations. […] The Lithuanian government must assume all the consequences which result from it ”, one can read in the Chinese press release quoted by AFP.
Beijing further considered that Lithuania had “abandoned the political commitment made during the establishment of diplomatic relations [avec la Chine]”, In reference to” the one-China policy “, according to which countries officially recognize the Chinese government rather than that of Taiwan.
Taiwan, a heavy dossier of geostrategic issues
The announcement in July of the opening of this embassy prompted Beijing to recall its ambassador to Lithuania and demand that Vilnius recall its ambassador to China, which Lithuania had done. Beijing also halted freight trains to Lithuania and stopped issuing food export permits.
This latest episode adds to the multiple tensions that regularly fuel the burning issue of Taiwanese autonomy. Through this dossier, Western chancelleries, Washington in the first place, exert continuous pressure on Beijing against a backdrop of geostrategic and commercial issues.
In this context, the United States, Great Britain and Australia for example sealed in September a defense alliance allowing Australia to acquire nuclear-powered submarines using American technology. Even though delivery is not expected for several years and China is not explicitly cited, the announcement angered Beijing and, separately, triggered a major diplomatic incident with France to whom the contract on the submarines were originally promised.
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