U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

04/28/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/28/2021 10:55

Menendez, Inhofe Send Letter in Support of HFX’s Recognition of Taiwan President Tsai

April 28, 2021

Menendez, Inhofe Send Letter in Support of HFX's Recognition of Taiwan President Tsai

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) sent a letter this week in support of the 2021 Halifax International Security Forum (HFX) and plans to award the John McCain Prize for Leadership in Public Service to President Tsai Ing-wen.

'As the Co-Chairs of the Senate Taiwan Caucus, we write you in support of the 2021 Halifax International Security Forum (HFX) and plans to award the John McCain Prize for Leadership in Public Service to President Tsai Ing-wen. As longstanding friends of Taiwan, we are pleased to hear Canada will continue supporting HFX and backs the award for President Tsai,' the Senators wrote.

'We applaud Canada's House of Commons for unanimously passing a motion to support HFX's recognition of President Tsai. We must continue to recognize outstanding democratic leadership, character, and resilience on the global stage. Further, we should not allow China's coercion tactics to threaten our collective friendship and security,' the Senators added.

The full text of this letter can be viewed here and below.

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau and Honorable Harjit Sajjan:

As the Co-Chairs of the Senate Taiwan Caucus, we write you in support of the 2021 Halifax International Security Forum (HFX) and plans to award the John McCain Prize for Leadership in Public Service to President Tsai Ing-wen. As longstanding friends of Taiwan, we are pleased to hear Canada will continue supporting HFX and backs the award for President Tsai.

Since 2018, HFX has awarded the John McCain Prize to 'individuals from any country who have demonstrated uncommon leadership in the pursuit of human justice.' This award embodies HFX's mission to 'strengthening strategic cooperation among democratic nations.'

Initially, we were concerned over reports that Canada considered holding HFX support due to pressure from Beijing. Since her election in 2016, President Tsai continues to promote democratic values in the face of Chinese aggression. China desperately wants to prevent Taiwan from gaining recognition as a democratic success.

We applaud Canada's House of Commons for unanimously passing a motion to support HFX's recognition of President Tsai. We must continue to recognize outstanding democratic leadership, character, and resilience on the global stage. Further, we should not allow China's coercion tactics to threaten our collective friendship and security. We understand the aggressive tactics that China has utilized against Canada, including the unacceptable and arbitrary detention

of Canadian citizens Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, and remain steadfast in our support for Canada and its people.

Thank you for Canada's continual support for this important forum and we look forward to meeting international security challenges together.

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