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12 June 2018, 10:37 | Erica Roy
Flickr wei zheng wang Washington Wants to Play'Taiwan Card to Exert Pressure on China- Analysts
"We should all be proud of this milestone, which is a symbol of the close cooperation and enduring friendship between the United States and Taiwan", AIT Director Kin W. Moy, the USA ambassador in all but name, said at the dedication ceremony.
It was opened to conduct relations with Taiwan following Washington's decision to switch diplomatic recognition to Beijing.
The new building best represents the progress in bilateral ties made over the past years, but it will not officially begin operations until early September, the AIT said.
But the AIT said in a statement Sunday that Marie Royce, assistant secretary of state for educational and cultural affairs, will visit Taiwan June 10-14 and attend the ceremony. Among officials attending Tuesday's ceremony was Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen, whose independence-leaning administration Beijing has sought to isolate diplomatically and threatens with invasion.
Taiwan's president, Tsai Ing-wen, told the crowd at the dedication ceremony that the building marks "a new chapter in a story that has been decades in the making".
Asked about whether there would be higher levels of American officials coming to Taiwan for the official start of operations at the AIT's new office complex expected in September, a move that will likely face protest from China, Moriarty said as of now, the institute has not had any specific plans. The policy dictates that the US formally recognize only one Chinese government - the Communist apparatus based in Beijing - and officially eschew relations with a Taiwanese government, which has proclaimed itself the "Republic of China".
Taiwanese politicians, however, hope that more senior US officials such as US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo or national security adviser John Bolton may visit the island this autumn.
China bars Taiwan from membership in the United Nations and many other worldwide organizations and has been luring away the island's remaining diplomatic allies, leaving it with just 18.
The White House is cautious about its Taiwan policy in the lead-up to the summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore on Tuesday, the same day of the dedication of AIT's new office. China also has recently pointedly conducted several military drills in the Taiwan strait and around the island.
The widely read Chinese state-run newspaper the Global Times on Tuesday said China needed to warn Taiwan and the U.S. against provocation.
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