Lithuanian President says allowing Taiwan to open office under its name was a mistake.
China has one very important policy for cooperation “just recognize one China” and then you will do any business with the Chinese but if you don’t then it’s trouble for you.
When Lithuanian opened a Representative office under the name Taiwan, I warned Lithuanian that their honeymoon period seemed to be over since it had touched on the go area.
I warned that China was not going to cut off the relationship with Lithuania entirely but Lithuania was was to pay a heavy price for having a pro-media politician and also following the U.S blindly.
China usually plays a long game but Lithuanian politicians forgot that in the western world people forget things quickly and Lithuanian was left to take the hit itself as the EU just didn’t want to get much involved and the U.S usually gives lips services especially through the media and nothing more.
President Gitanas Nausea says unconventional measures have started to be taken against Lithuania “it was a mistake to allow Taiwan to open a representative office in the capital Vilnius under its own name”.
“I think it was not the opening of the Taiwanese office that was a mistake, but the name, which was not coordinated with me,” Gitanas Nauseda told a local Ziniu Radijas radio.
“The name of the office became a key factor that now has a very strong impact on our relations with China,” Gitanas said.
“I believe the name was the spark and now we have to deal with the consequences”, he added.
“Unconventional measures have started to be taken against Lithuania, and now we have to be very active and signal very clearly to EU that this is an attack, a kind of pressure on one of the EU countries”, he said.
The problem is EU policy doesn’t recognize Taiwan as a country and to make matters worse, Lithuania never consulted the EU when it was taking the decision but now the EU has to clean its mess and we still yet to figure out how will EU support Lithuania when its policy is against what Lithuania did.
After the opening of the office last November, Lithuania was held in the media as a hero for standing up to China but China warned Lithuania to correct the mistake or face the Consequences, a threat Lithuania never took seriously maybe because it was being supported by the U.S and was EU member country.
Then China downgraded its diplomatic ties with Lithuania and urged Lithuania to correct the mistake but Lithuania never listened and so other measures were taken which have hit Lithuania economically.
“Recognizing its mistake is a right step, but more important is to take action to correct the wrong situation of creating ‘one China, one Taiwan’ and return to the one-China principle,” Wang said.
Chinese foreign ministry said when it downgraded diplomatic relations with Lithuania “Chinese government, out of the need to safeguard national sovereignty and basic norms governing international relations has no choice but to downgrade its diplomatic relations with Lithuania to the charge d’affaires level”.
Lithuania foreign ministry replied by saying ” Lithuania had a right to expand cooperation with Taiwan and to receive and establish non-diplomatic representations for ensuring the practical development of such ties”.
The issue started in August when Beijing asked the Lithuanian ambassador to return home and recalled its ambassador from Vilnius after the European country moved ahead and decided to exchange diplomatic offices with Taiwan.
Many experts warned Lithuania that the move was very wrong and dangerous but Lithuania never listened and so, it’s feeling the consequences of a simple mistake that was taken well aware of the repercussions.
Taiwan and mainland China, both call themselves true representatives of China and they had reached a consensus about it but starting in 2016, the new Taiwan leader started insisting that Taiwan was an independent country which increased tensions across Taiwan.
Even the U.S has failed to announce publicly that Taiwan is a country and doesn’t have any diplomatic relations with the Island China calls its own.