Honduras may sever ties
‘ONE-SIDED’ TRUCE: TSU Legislator Huang Wen-ling
cited Honduran media reports the nation was mulling ties with China, saying it
showed Ma’s ‘diplomatic truce’ had failed
By Lee Yu-hsin and Jake Chung / Staff reporter, with staff writer
Recent actions and comments by officials and reports in La Prensa newspaper in
the Republic of Honduras indicate that the nation may become the next to break
diplomatic ties with the Republic of China (ROC), following the unexpected
severance of diplomatic ties with the Gambia, Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU)
Legislator Huang Wen-ling (黃文玲) said yesterday.
Huang said that she had received calls from Taiwanese businesspeople and
expatriates in Honduras that in May, La Prensa ran an article titled “Diplomatic
ties between Taiwan and Honduras may be terminated,” reporting that the Honduras
was mulling terminating relations that the two nations have shared for more than
Another report in August said that the Honduran foreign minister had reiterated
the nation’s interest in pursuing official diplomatic ties with China, although
there was no mention of whether Honduras was actively considering sacrificing
Taiwan, Huang said.
La Prensa is the biggest newspaper in Honduras, and even helped Taiwan advocate
for its cause in the conflict between Taiwan and the Philippines earlier this
year, when Philippine Coast Guard personnel shot at the Taiwanese fishing boat
Kuang Ta Hsing No. 28, killing Hung Shih-cheng (洪石成), by running photographs of
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) visiting Hung’s family, Huang said.
That just a few months later, it would print an article quoting Honduras’
foreign minister expressing interest in establishing formal diplomatic ties with
Beijing shows that China was still trying to isolate Taiwan from the
international community, despite Ma’s “diplomatic truce” with China, Huang said.
Since Ma assumed office in 2008, the diplomatic tussle with China has only ended
with defeat after defeat for Taiwan, Huang said, citing failed cooperation on a
railway project in Honduras as an example.
Taiwan had promised to help Honduras with the railroad, but failed to deliver,
and in July, Honduras signed a memorandum of understanding with a Chinese
company to develop the railroad system, planning to construct more than 10
lines, with one even exceeding 40km and linking the most important harbors in
the Caribbean and the Pacific by rail, Huang said.
The railroad would allow Honduras to increase its cargo storage volume by
establishing more than 240,000 new cargo depositories, which would greatly
influence Honduras’ transportation and economic development, Huang said.
The so-called diplomatic truce is only one-sided, and the Gambia’s move to sever
ties is perhaps only the beginning of a domino effect as China continues to lure
Taiwan’s diplomatic allies away.
In other developments, the Legislative Yuan’s Foreign and National Defense
Committee invited Minister of Foreign Affairs David Lin (林永樂) to report on the
severance of diplomatic ties by the Gambia.
Huang asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to not only explain why the Gambia
severed diplomatic ties, but to punish the responsible ministry officials.
Huang also called on the ministry to come up with ideas on how to stabilize
Taiwan’s relations with its remaining 22 diplomatic allies.