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Honduras' dual Taiwan, China recognition unacceptable: MOFA

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The foreign minister yesterday stressed that the Taiwan government would not accept Honduras' double recognition of China and Taiwan amid reports that the Central American ally would soon open a trade office in Beijing, a move that could signify the first step toward establishing formal ties with the mainland.

Foreign Minister David Lin made the pledge when asked by reporters to comment on ties with Honduras in response to a statement posted by the Honduran presidential office last Wednesday.

“President Porfirio Lobo Sosa confirmed this Wednesday that he intends to open diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China, a move that should not affect relations with Taiwan,” the statement said.

“In the 21st century, one can't keep thinking that expanding relations with one country means being the enemy of another,” it added.

Asked to comment if the statement means the ally is considering exploring diplomatic relations with Beijing while maintaining ties with Taipei, Lin said firmly that the Taiwan government would not accept double recognition.

But he affirmed that bilateral ties remain stable, noting that the ally's plan to open a trade office in Beijing has not yet been finalized.

The Honduran government has pledged that while his country plans to expand its economic ties with China, the initiative will be based on the principle of not hurting diplomatic relations with Taiwan, he added.

Jaime Wu (吳進木), head of the ministry's Department of Latin American and Caribbean Affairs, added that the nation's ambassador to Honduras, Joseph Kuo (郭永樑), has requested a meeting with Honduran foreign affairs officials to seek clarification about the Honduran leader's statements.

“From our initial understanding, President Lobo did not mention developing 'diplomatic relations' with China when he talked to reporters,” Wu said.

Wu noted that his ministry will talk to Honduran counterparts to figure out what caused the difference between Lobo's remarks and the presidential office's statement.

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