US willing to treat Hung same as Tsai if she visits
The United States is willing to accord likely Kuomintang (KMT) presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu ( ) the same level of courtesy as her Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) counterpart should she decide to visit the U.S, the new top U.S. envoy in Taiwan said yesterday.
Answering questions during a roundtable with local press yesterday, new American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Director Kin Moy reiterated the long-standing U.S. stance that it does not take a position on any of the candidates.
It has been the stance of the U.S. that it will not interfere with democratic elections overseas, he said, adding that Washington does not favor any one particular candidate in Taiwan.
The AIT head said the U.S. looks forward to working with whomever the Taiwan people choose in the Presidential Office and the Legislative Yuan.
Commenting on presidential candidate and DPP Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen’s ( ) recent U.S. visit, Moy said that the U.S. had “constructive exchanges” with the Taiwanese political leader during her trip.
“We also welcome other candidates to visit should they wish to do so,” he said.
Asked to comment on whether Washington would accord Hung the same level of courtesy shown to Tsai should she visit the U.S. in the future, Moy said “yes” and said he would welcome such a trip.
“I think Madame Tsai’s trip to the U.S. was constructive and gave her the opportunity to share her views with a broad spectrum of people in the U.S.,” he said.
If Hung expresses interest in visiting the U.S. as the KMT’s presidential candidate, Moy said the U.S. would welcome her to share her views on a wide range of topics with a broad spectrum of Americans.
During her recent stay in the U.S., Tsai visited the White House and the U.S. State Department, making her the first Taiwanese presidential candidate to do so, according to local media reports.
Willing to Meet Tsai and Hung
Moy said he had met previously with Tsai on different occasions in the U.S. before and found his discussions with her on various issues to be “very productive.”
He has not yet met with Hung, but he certainly hopes to meet her as well as any other potential Taiwanese presidential dates, he noted.
Moy officially assumed his duties as the U.S.’s top envoy to Taiwan on June 8 to take over the vacancy left with the departure of his predecessor Christopher Marut.
A former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, Moy said yesterday that it is a “dream assignment” for him to come back to Taiwan. He last visited Taipei in 1995.
He is looking forward to continuing to enhance even closer bilateral relations in years to come.
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