Taiwan has announced changes to the passport design, making the word “Taiwan” larger and shrinking the words “Republic of China”.
Authorities said the redesign was to prevent confusion between its nationals and citizens of China.
The island is for all practical purposes an independent state but China sees it as a breakaway province.
A Beijing foreign ministry spokeswoman said this is able to not change Taiwan being an “inalienable a part of China”.
The English words Republic of China – Taiwan’s official name – are going to be moved from the highest of the duvet to instead wrap around the national emblem during a smaller font, and therefore the English word Taiwan is going to be larger and in bold.
Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu told reporters that since the start of the coronavirus pandemic “our people have kept hoping that we can give more prominence to Taiwan’s visibility, avoiding people mistakenly thinking they are from China”,
As countries have imposed travel bans during a bid to combat the outbreak they need imposed equivalent restrictions on travelers from Taiwan as from China, authorities have said.
The Covid-19 has brought the Taiwan dispute back to prominence.
While it’s won international praise for its handling of the health crisis, it’s not a member of the planet Health Organization (WHO). China has not allowed it to attend any WHO meetings since 2016.
Taiwan has governed itself since 1949 when the mainland government fled to the island after its defeat by the Communist Party in China’s war. It has its own democratically elected government, its own army and its own currency.
But under the One China policy, the govt in Beijing insists it’s the legitimate ruler of Taiwan. It says the territory will at some point come under its leadership again – by force if necessary.
Few countries diplomatically recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation, and China has reacted furiously when countries, dignitaries, or businesses have suggested the maximum amount.
Milos Vystrcil, the Senate speaker within the Czech Republic, visited Taiwan on Tuesday. He gave a speech to its parliament announcing his support and declaring “I am Taiwanese” – regard to US President John F Kennedy’s famous “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech in 1963.
Chinese secretary of state Wang Yi denounced the move, saying Mr. Vystrcil had “crossed a red line” and said he would “pay an important price”.
It came just weeks after United States Cabinet member Alex Azar traveled to Taiwan and met President Tsai Ing-wen. The health and human services secretary was the highest-ranking US politician to carry meetings on the island for many years.
A far off ministry spokesman said when the visit was announced.“China firmly opposes any official interactions between the US and Taiwan,”
“We urge the US… to not send any wrong signals to ‘Taiwan independence’ elements to avoid severe damage to China-US relations.”