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Donald Trump tests China's red line on Taiwan using Beijing's playbook

While Trump soon backpedaled, displaying an inconsistency that has become a hallmark of his presidency, it showed China that relations with the U.S. were changing quickly

Photo: Bloomberg
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“Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party is willing to become a chess piece and collude with the U.S. in a bid to seek political gains,” Ma was quoted as saying. Photo: Bloomberg

Colum Murphy | Bloomberg
It didn’t take long for Donald Trump to throw out the long-established diplomatic rulebook on Taiwan: A month before taking office in January 2017, he accepted a telephone call from President Tsai Ing-wen.

That 10-minute conversation amounted to the first time a president-elect had spoken to a Taiwanese head of state since the US cut ties with Taipei in favor of Beijing in 1979, and it infuriated President Xi Jinping’s administration. Trump threw fuel on the fire a few days later by questioning whether the US needed to abide by its “one-China” policy.

While Trump soon backpedaled, displaying an inconsistency

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First Published: Aug 06 2020 | 7:58 PM IST

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