U.S. rephrases Taiwan policy
- In a factsheet updated on Friday, the U.S. Department of State made a substantial change in the description of its relations with Taiwan, signaling a more aggressive stance over the Taiwan issue although without abandoning the expression of “one China policy.”
- The new statement deleted the sentence in the old version highlighting the U.S. recognition of “the Government of the People’s Republic of China as the sole legal government of China” and the acknowledgment of “the Chinese position that there is but one China and Taiwan is part of China.” It also deleted the sentence stating, “The United States does not support Taiwan independence.”
- On the other hand, the new statement started by dubbing Taiwan as “a key U.S. partner in Indo-Pacific” and added the Six Assurances, which is a Reagan-era promise to Taiwan, as the third foundation of its one China policy on top of the Taiwan Relations Act and the three U.S.-China Joint Communiques.
John Lee elected as Hong Kong Chief Executive
- John Lee Ka-chiu became the next Hong Kong Chief Executive by getting 1,416 of 1,428 valid votes cast in a record 99.2% support rate. The sole candidate that was elected by an election committee will be sworn in as the sixth leader of the city on July 1.
- While Chinese authorities hailed the election as “a successful practice of Hong Kong's new election system,” the G7 foreign ministers issued a joint statement after the election, saying the “selection process” of the election is “part of a continued assault on political pluralism and fundamental freedoms.”
Xi advocates independent policy-making in talks with Scholz
- In a virtual meeting with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Chinese President Xi Jinping reiterated China’s position that “The China-Europe relationship is not targeted at, subjugated to, or controlled by any third party” and that “The security of Europe should be kept in the hands of Europeans themselves.”
Wang Qishan meets with Yoon Seok-youl
- Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan is in South Korea today for the inauguration ceremony of President Yoon Suk-yeol. The rare trip by a Chinese leader during the Covid pandemic is days ahead of U.S. President Joe Biden’s scheduled visit to the country. President Yoon got elected two months ago. His U.S.-leaning stance and less solid political experience have injected uncertainty into the region.
Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on track to become Philippine president
- Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the son of former Philippine President Ferdinand E. Marcos, is poised to obtain a landslide victory in Monday’s presidential election. The Philippine Congress will canvass the votes and announce the official result at the end of this month. The Marcos family stepped down in 1986 amid an anti-corruption movement. The departing president Rodrigo Duterte has been helping Mr. Marcos with the return.
Ukraine’s EU membership could pend for decades
- With the EU members clashing on the timeline of Ukraine joining the bloc, French President Emmanuel Macron warned that it could take “decades” for Kiyv to gain membership. Macron called for a new European organization to engage with democratic European nations, including the UK. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz showed interest in the idea.
Japan to ban Russian oil
- Japan on Monday became the last G7 country to lay out the plan on the Russian oil ban. Japan’s oil supply heavily relies on imports, with those from Russia accounting for 3.6% of its total purchase. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the ban was a difficult decision. Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Koichi Hagiuda, who was in Washington D.C. yesterday, told the press that "Japan has limited resources and it is difficult for us to immediately align ourselves" with the EU.