Pelosi departs Taiwan after visit that fueled US-China rift
Speaker Nancy Pelosi departed Taiwan on Wednesday after meeting with the president and other officials in a visit that heightened tensions with China.
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi left Taiwan after a visit that heightened tensions with China, saying Wednesday that she and other members of Congress in her delegation showed they will not abandon their commitment to the self-governing island.
Pelosi, the first U.S. speaker to visit the island in more than 25 years, courted Beijing’s wrath with the visit and set off more than a week of debate over whether it was a good idea after news of it leaked. In Taipei she remained calm but defiant.
“Today the world faces a choice between democracy and autocracy,” she said in a short speech during a meeting with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen. “America’s determination to preserve democracy, here in Taiwan and around the world, remains ironclad.”
Pelosi arrived at a military base in South Korea on Wednesday evening ahead of meetings with political leaders in Seoul, after which she will visit Japan. Both countries are U.S. alliance partners, together hosting about 80,000 American personnel as a bulwark against North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and China’s increased assertiveness in the South China and East China seas.