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Newsline: U.S. lawmakers push to rename Taiwan’s de facto embassy in Washington

A bipartisan group of U.S. lawmakers proposed matching bills in the Senate and House of Representatives on Thursday that would require the United States to negotiate the renaming of Taiwan’s de facto embassy in Washington as the “Taiwan Representative Office,” a move certain to rankle China. It is currently called the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO), using the name of the island’s capital city. Should the measures become law, any change in the office’s name could provide cover to smaller countries to take similar steps to boost engagement with Taiwan, which China claims as its own territory. The United States, like most countries, does not have official ties with democratically governed Taiwan, but is its biggest international backer. The bills direct the Secretary of State to “seek to enter into negotiations” with TECRO to rename its office as the “Taiwan Representative Office.” (https://www.investing.com/news/world-news/us-lawmakers-push-to-rename-taiwans-de-facto-embassy-in-washington-2756813) The White House and U.S. State Department and China’s embassy in Washington did not respond immediately to requests for comment. China chafes at any international references to Taiwan it sees as suggesting the island is its own country. It downgraded its diplomatic relations with Lithuania and pressed multinationals to sever ties with the country after Taiwan opened an office in Vilnius last year called the Taiwanese Representative Office in Lithuania.

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