Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen will visit St Vincent among other Caribbean allies including, St Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis, and Haiti from July 11 to 22.
Taiwan has been trying to shore up its diplomatic alliances amid pressure from China, which has been whittling down its few remaining diplomatic allies, especially in the Caribbean and Latin America.
The four Caribbean allies share similar ideals with Taiwan, Taiwan Deputy Foreign Minister Miguel Tsao said, adding that the theme of the visit is “freedom, democracy and sustainable governance”.
However, he added that the visit to Haiti, the Western Hemisphere’s poorest nation, will be less than 24 hours due to unrest there.
Protesters have for months agitated to remove President Jovenel Moise, a former businessman who took office in February 2017.
The trip will also take the president to Washington which has angered China which urged Washington not to allow her to visit.
Tsai’s time in the United States will be unusually long, as normally she spends just a night at a time on transit stops, but a State Department spokeswoman said there had been no change in the U.S. “one-China” policy, under which Washington officially recognizes Beijing and not Taipei, while assisting Taiwan.
“The United States facilitates, from time to time, representatives of the Taiwan authorities to transit the United States,” the spokeswomen said.
“Such transits are undertaken out of consideration for the safety, comfort, convenience and dignity of the passenger and are in keeping with our one-China policy.”
In Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said China urges the United States “not to allow Tsai Ing-wen to transit, and cautiously and appropriately handle Taiwan related issues, to avoid harming Sino-U.S. relations and peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait”.