Diplomatic Briefing

Your exclusive news aggregator handpicked daily!

Archive for Dominican Republic

Newsline: US Embassy in Dominican Republic mulls a reopening plan

The United States Embassy in the Dominican Republic is considering a reopening plan, although a date hasn’t been set yet. Carolina Escalera, press attaché of the embassy, said that she is working on a protocol that adheres to social distancing measures that prioritizes the health and safety of all. “We understand that the impact of the COVID-19 virus has been extensive and we continue to monitor the evolution of this pandemic. At the moment, we do not have a specific date or time to reopen our routine services at the Embassy and the Visa Application Center (VAC),” she said, quoted by El Dia. (https://dominicantoday.com/dr/local/2020/05/28/us-embassy-in-dominican-republic-mulls-a-reopening-plan/) She added however that they continue to provide limited services, in compliance with the United States Department of State guidelines.

Newsline: Dominican Republic opens Beijing embassy after dropping Taiwan

The Dominican Republic opened its embassy in Beijing Saturday, months after cutting ties with Taiwan amid a Chinese diplomatic offensive that aims to politically isolate the island it claims as its own territory. Speaking at a ribbon-cutting ceremony, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the Caribbean island nation’s decision to switch diplomatic relations to Beijing “serves the fundamental interests of the Dominican people and completely conforms to the trend of the times.” Also present was Dominican President Danilo Medina, who met with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday. Both the Dominican Republic and El Salvador broke diplomatic ties with Taiwan earlier this year as Beijing steps-up up diplomatic and economic pressure on Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, who has refused to endorse its stand that Taiwan is a part of China. Only 17 mainly small, developing countries still recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation.


Newsline: China opens embassy in Dominican Republic after it deserts Taiwan

China’s most senior envoy inaugurated a new embassy in the Dominican Republic on Friday after the Caribbean country cut ties with Taiwan in a move that prompted US concern over the island’s dwindling number of allies. Self-ruled Taiwan, which China claims as its own, now has formal relations with only 17 countries, almost all of them small and less developed nations in Central America and the Pacific, including Belize and Nauru. “We have witnessed a historic breakthrough,” said Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi, the government’s top diplomat, in an speech televised by Chinese state media. Along with the Dominican Republic’s decision in May, Panama and El Salvador have also switched recognition to Beijing in the past two years. The United States recalled its top diplomats from those countries and warned that China was offering economic incentives in a bid for domination.


Newsline: Taiwanese embassy in the Dominican Republic closes

After Taiwan and the Dominican Republic severed diplomatic ties, Taiwanese offices in many countries lowered their flags on the afternoon of May 1. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said Thursday that it will convene relevant departments in the near future, including the Latin American Department, the Secretariat, and the CCICED, to discuss the evacuation of the embassy and technical groups.


Newsline: China, Dominican Republic to establish diplomatic ties

China and the Dominican Republic have signed an agreement to establish diplomatic ties, the Chinese government’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, said at a news briefing on Tuesday. The Dominican Republic has been a diplomatic ally of Taiwan. China offered the Dominican Republic a $3.1 billion package of investments and loans to get them to sever ties with Taiwan, a Taiwan official said on Tuesday, after the Caribbean nation switched allegiance to China in a diplomatic blow to the self-ruled island. Taiwan, claimed by China as its own, has formal relations now with only 19 countries, many of them poor nations in Central America and the Pacific like Belize and Nauru. China says Taiwan is simply a wayward province with no right to state-to-state ties. China and Taiwan have tried to poach each other’s allies over the years, often dangling generous aid packages in front of developing nations, though Taipei struggles to compete with an increasingly powerful China. Panama ended its long-standing relationship with Taiwan last year in a major diplomatic victory for China. The Vatican is possibly next on the list, as the Holy See and China edge closer to an accord on the appointment of bishops in China.


Newsline: Vatican’s former ambassador to the Dominican Republic could be tried

The Vatican’s former ambassador to the Dominican Republic, who has been accused of paying underage boys there to engage in sexual acts, has lost his diplomatic immunity and could ultimately face prosecution in criminal courts outside of the Vatican, a spokesman for the Roman Catholic Church announced. The former ambassador, Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski, has already been defrocked by the Vatican, the harshest penalty under the church’s canon law short of excommunication. Beyond that, the Vatican has also said that it intends to try Mr. Wesolowski on criminal charges — the first time it will hold a criminal trial for sexual abuse.


Newsline: Vatican Defrocks Ambassador in Abuse Inquiry

The Vatican has defrocked its former ambassador to the Dominican Republic, an archbishop from Poland who was accused of sexually abusing boys while he served as the pope’s representative in the Caribbean nation. The former archbishop, Jozef Wesolowski, 65, is the first papal nuncio known to have been removed from the priesthood because of accusations of child sexual abuse. The Vatican announced that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which handles abuse cases, had recently completed his canonical trial. He has two months to appeal the decision. He still faces a criminal trial by the Vatican because, as a diplomat, he is a citizen of the Vatican city-state. It would be the first such trial held under new rules for criminal procedures implemented by the Vatican last year and a test of Pope Francis’ resolve to turn a page on the long-running sexual abuse scandal.


Newsline: Gay US envoys unpack in Australia, Dominican Republic

Two homosexual U.S. ambassadors and their partners have settled into their posts in Australia and the Dominican Republic – both nations that ban gay marriages. John Berry, who recruited gay supporters for President Obama last year, made his debut in a television interview on the Australian Broadcasting Corp., where he displayed his diplomatic talent by declining to discuss Australia’s laws on same-sex marriage. “I believe gay marriage is a sensitive topic, and it’s one that Australians need to decide for Australia,” he said. Mr. Berry married his partner of 17 years, Curtis Yee, in August, shortly after the Senate confirmed his nomination. In the Dominican Republic, Ambassador James “Wally” Brewster and Bob Satawake announced their arrival in the Caribbean nation on a video posted on the U.S. Embassy’s website.


Newsline: Vatican recalls ambassador in Dominican Republic amid accusations of child abuse

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to the Dominican Republic after he was accused of sexually abusing children. Two local TV channels broadcast allegations of paedophilia against Archbishop Josef Wesolowski, who had been nuncio, or ambassador, in the capital, Santo Domingo, for nearly six years. A spokesman for the Catholic church in the Dominican Republic, Monsignor Agripino Nunez Collado, said that “The law is for everyone” and there was no excuse for anyone who violated the law, “not citizenship, not faith, not creed, not politics, not religion”, saying again “The law is for all.” Wesolowski will be investigated over the charges of paedophilia by the Holy See as well as by prosecutors in the Dominican Republic. Pope Francis has previously said that he wants to root out the sexual abuse of children by priests and ensure that abusers are punished.


Newsline: Dominican Republic sees gay US diplomat an ‘insult’

Church leaders in culturally conservative Dominican Republic are outraged that President Obama nominated an openly homosexual activist to serve as ambassador to the Caribbean nation. Cardinal Nicolas de Jesus Lopez, the Roman Catholic archbishop of the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo, Bishop Pablo Cedano and the Rev. Cristobal Cardozo, leader of the Dominican Evangelical Fraternity, are urging President Danilo Medino to reject the nominee, Chicago lawyer James Brewster. “It’s an insult to good Dominican customs,” Father Cardozo said last week. Mr. Brewster, co-chairman for gay issues at the Democratic National Committee and a major fundraiser for Mr. Obama, is one of five homosexuals Mr. Obama nominated to serve as ambassadors in June, designated as “Gay Pride Month.” He named State Department official Daniel Baer to serve as ambassador to the 57-nation Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, former Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry as ambassador to Australia, HBO executive James Costos as envoy to Spain and Rufus Gifford as ambassador to Denmark.