Taiwan’s foreign minister has welcomed an announcement from Honduras that the Central American country is interested in establishing diplomatic ties with Beijing.
The announcement, made by Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez in a televised address on Tuesday, comes after the country’s government declared it would no longer recognize Taiwan.
Hernandez said that Honduras “hopes to establish diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China to promote the development of the country and its people.”
In response to the announcement, Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said in a statement that the island nation will continue to maintain close ties with its Central American allies, despite the move by Honduras.
“We will continue to maintain close relations with other countries in the region, and to work together to promote development and prosperity,” he said.
The Chinese government welcomed Honduras’ decision, saying it was in line with international law and the “one-China” policy.
“We welcome the Honduran government’s decision, and are willing to work together with the country to promote the continuous development of bilateral relations,” foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said in a statement.
China views Taiwan as a renegade province that must eventually be reunited with the mainland. Beijing has been pressuring countries to cut ties with Taiwan in recent years, as it seeks to isolate the island nation diplomatically.