Foreign Affairs
Former Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso will visit Taiwan next week


Japan’s former Prime Minister Taro Aso, who currently serves as vice chairman of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, will visit Taiwan next week, the Japan-based Kyodo news agency reported. The Liberal Democratic Party announced Taro Aso’s upcoming visit to Taiwan.

Taro Aso will be the highest-ranking LDP member to visit Taiwan. According to the LDP, during his three-day visit, Aso is scheduled to hold separate meetings with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen and Vice President Lai Ching-tey to strengthen ties with the island. Planned.

Earlier this year, Aso met with former Taipei mayor Ko Wen-je, New Taipei mayor of the main opposition Nationalist Party, Hou Yu-ih, and chairman of the opposition Taiwan People’s Party. The two sides met during the visit of Taiwanese leaders to Japan earlier this year, Kyodo News reported. During his visit to Taiwan, Taro Aso will visit the grave of former Taiwan President Lee Teng-hui on Monday. According to the party, he will also speak on an international platform on Tuesday.

Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that it welcomes Aso’s visit to Japan. It praised the “practical action” being taken by former Japanese PM Taro Aso in support of the island, Kyodo News reported. According to the ministry, Taro Aso’s visit “will not only highlight the solid friendship between Taiwan and Japan but also deepen cooperation in various fields.” The visit comes at a time when China is increasing military pressure on Taiwan, which Beijing claims as its territory.

In a written response to Kyodo News regarding Aso’s visit to Japan, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said, “China has consistently and firmly opposed Japanese politicians’ visits to Taiwan for political gains.” In August last year, the Chinese military conducted large-scale exercises around Taiwan after the then-US Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi landed in Taiwan. His visit to Taiwan also strained relations between the US and China.

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