::: TSR Weekly Report
2021-08-21 | NO.45(34) epaper |
Note to Readers
TSR announces newly published books about Taiwan and East Asia on its website and in its weekly newsletter. If you're a scholar or your book will be published by an academic press, please send the title of your book and a link to the publisher's web site to TSR's Executive Editor, Dalton Lin (dalton.lin@inta.gatech.edu).     
Cross-Strait Relations
Beijing Prepares to Build Airport on Reclaimed Land Near Taiwan Amid Rising Tension Across Strait (2021-08-18)
(SCMP, By Laura Zhou) China is preparing to build an airport on land claimed from the sea near Taiwan, local media reported on Tuesday, as Beijing moves ahead with plans to integrate development with the island amid political tension.

China to Halt Direct Freight Train Service to Lithuania: MOFA
(CNA, By Chung Yu-chen and Emerson Lim) Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Thursday confirmed media reports that a Chinese freight operator has decided to halt its direct train service to Lithuania, in apparent retaliation by Beijing over a spat relating to Taiwan.
U.S.-Taiwan Relations
Ministry Thanks US for Lithuania Boost (2021-08-15)
(Taipei Times, By Lin Chia-nan) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday thanked US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman for supporting Lithuania developing ties with Taiwan during her call with Lithuanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Gabrielius Landsbergis.

Full Transcript of ABC News' George Stephanopoulos' Interview with President Joe Biden
(ABC News) STEPHANOPOULOS: You talked about our adversaries, China and Russia. You already see China telling Taiwan, "See? You can't count on the Americans." (LAUGH)
BIDEN: Sh-- why wouldn't China say that? Look, George, the idea that w-- there's a fundamental difference between-- between Taiwan, South Korea, NATO. We are in a situation where they are in-- entities we've made agreements with based on not a civil war they're having on that island or in South Korea, but on an agreement where they have a unity government that, in fact, is trying to keep bad guys from doin' bad things to them.
We have made-- kept every commitment. We made a sacred commitment to Article Five that if in fact anyone were to invade or take action against our NATO allies, we would respond. Same with Japan, same with South Korea, same with-- Taiwan. It's not even comparable to talk about that.

U.S. Position on Taiwan Unchanged Despite Biden Comment - Official (2021-08-20)
(Reuters, By David Brunnstrom) A Biden administration official said on Thursday that U.S. policy on Taiwan had not changed after President Joe Biden appeared to suggest the United States would defend the island if it were attacked, a deviation from a long-held U.S. position of "strategic ambiguity". 

Tsai Says Taiwan Needs to Be Stronger (2021-08-19)
(Taipei Times/Bloomberg/AFP) Afghanistan’s return to Taliban rule following the withdrawal of US forces shows that Taiwan needs to be “stronger and more united” in ensuring its own defense, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said yesterday.

U.S. Reiterates Commitment to Taiwan after Exit from Afghanistan (2021-08-20)
(CNA, By Stacy Hsu and Matthew Mazzetta) The U.S. State Department has reaffirmed its "abiding" commitment to Taiwan, amid concerns that its withdrawal from Afghanistan, which led to the country's takeover by the Taliban, had damaged Washington's credibility overseas.

New U.S. Top Envoy Talks Cyber Security, Health with Taiwan Officials (2021-08-19)
(CNA, By Hsiao Po-wen, Fan Cheng-hsiang, Chung Yu-chen, and Emerson Lim) Sandra Oudkirk, the new director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), met with more Taiwanese officials this week to discuss United States-Taiwan cooperation in a range of fields, including cyber security and health.
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Taiwan's Domestic Politics
Incumbent Johnny Chiang Registers for KMT Chairmanship Election (2021-08-17)
(CNA, By Liu Kuan-ting and Teng Pei-ju) Opposition Kuomintang (KMT) chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) on Tuesday formally registered to compete in the party chairmanship race scheduled for Sept. 25.

Taiwan's Foreign Relations 
Taiwan Pledges US$500,000 to Haiti Following 7.2 Magnitude Quake (2021-08-15)
(CNA, By Yeh Su-ping, Matt Yu, Huang Li-yun, and Joseph Yeh) Taiwan's government on Sunday pledged US$500,000 in relief funds to help Haiti deal with the aftermath of a powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck the Caribbean ally on Saturday.
U.S.-China Relations
Biden Nominates Burns and Emanuel to Be His Ambassadors to China and Japan (2021-08-20)
(New York Times, By Annie Karni) President Biden on Friday nominated R. Nicholas Burns, a veteran Foreign Service officer and a former ambassador to NATO, as ambassador to China and Rahm Emanuel, the former mayor of Chicago and former President Barack Obama’s first chief of staff, as ambassador to Japan.
China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
China's Domestic Politics
Hong Kong Democracy Group Behind Massive Protests Disbands (2021-08-15)
(Associated Press) A pro-democracy group that organized some of the biggest protests during months of political upheaval in Hong Kong in 2019 is dissolving, the group said Sunday. The Hong Kong Civil Human Rights Front, made up of a slew of member organizations, said it could no longer operate.

Hong Kong Police Arrest Students Over ‘Advocating Terrorism’ (2021-08-18)
(New York Times, By Tiffany May) The arrests, by the new national security police in Hong Kong, represented the latest crackdown on opposing voices as the Chinese territory tries to snuff out any sign of the dissent that flared during the 2019 protest movement.

China Delays Vote on Hong Kong Anti-Sanctions Law: Report (2021-08-20)
(Straits Times/Bloomberg) China's top legislative body has postponed a vote on a proposal to impose an anti-sanctions law on Hong Kong, the South China Morning Post reported, delaying a move that could put global firms in the cross hairs of a conflict between the world's two largest economies.

China Pushes Adoption of Language, Cultural Symbols in Tibet (2021-08-19)
(Associated Press) A top Chinese official said Thursday that “all-round efforts” are needed to ensure Tibetans speak standard spoken and written Chinese and share the “cultural symbols and images of the Chinese nation.”

New Chinese Law Tightens Control over Company Data on Users (2021-08-20)
(Associated Press) China is tightening control over information gathered by companies about the public under a law approved Friday by its ceremonial legislature, expanding the ruling Communist Party’s crackdown on internet industries.

China's Foreign Relations 
South Koreans Now Dislike China More Than They Dislike Japan (2021-08-20)
(New York Times, By Choe Sang-Hun) There is growing anti-China sentiment in South Korea, particularly among young voters. Conservative politicians are eager to turn the antipathy into a presidential election issue.

As Chinese Vaccines Stumble, U.S. Finds New Opening in Asia
(New York Times, By Sui-Lee Wee and Steven Lee Myers) As more countries turn away from Chinese shots, vaccine aid from the United States offers an opportunity to restore relations in a region that American officials have mostly ignored for years while China extended its influence.

China Won’t Repeat America’s Mistakes in Afghanistan
(Foreign Policy, By Azeem Ibrahim) As the United States departs Afghanistan and Kabul falls, China is not showing up with an army. It is showing up bearing gifts to all parties, not least the ascendant Taliban. Beijing’s prospects, therefore, are already looking much better—and cheaper—than the U.S. state- and military-building project.

In Afghanistan, China Is Ready to Step Into the Void (2021-08-20)
(New York Times, By Zhou Bo) Beijing has few qualms about fostering a closer relationship with the Taliban and is ready to assert itself as the most influential outside player in an Afghanistan now all but abandoned by the United States.

China Is the Biggest Winner From Africa’s New Free Trade Bloc (2021-08-19)
(Foreign Policy, By Oluwatosin Adeshokan) AfCFTA was supposed to usher in a new era of continental trade and economic growth—but Beijing’s not letting that happen.
Military Balance
11 Chinese Warplanes Enter Taiwan's ADIZ as Both Sides Stage Drills (2021-08-17)
(CNA, By Matt Yu and Joseph Yeh) Eleven Chinese military aircraft entered Taiwan's southwestern air defense identification zone (ADIZ) Tuesday morning, as Taiwan's military and its Chinese counterparts were staging separate drills near the area.

China Holds Assault Drills Near Taiwan After 'Provocations' (2021-08-17)
(Reuters, By Yew Lun Tian and Yimou Lee) China carried out assault drills near Taiwan on Tuesday, with warships and fighter jets exercising off the southwest and southeast of the island in what the country's armed forces said was a response to "external interference" and "provocations".

Japan, Taiwan Ruling Parties to Hold 1st-ever Security Talks over China Threat
(Taiwan News, By Keoni Everington) Officials from the ruling parties of Japan and Taiwan are planning to hold bilateral talks for the first time to address the military and "gray-zone" coercion tactics China imposes on both nations. 

Europe in Europe, America in Asia? (2021-08-18)
(The Diplomat, By TSURUOKA Michito) While we need to cast a more critical eye on what Europe can actually bring to the Indo-Pacific, it is too early to dismiss Europe’s military engagement in the region.
Regional Issues
What Washington’s Afghanistan Withdrawal Means for Southeast Asia (2021-08-20)
(The Diplomat, By John Harley Breen) The haphazard withdrawal will likely reinforce long-standing queries about the strength of U.S. commitments in the region.

How Should Australia Respond to China’s Arbitrary Detentions? (2021-08-18)
(The Diplomat, By Grant Wyeth) One option for countries like Australia and Canada is to boycott the upcoming Winter Olympics.

Decoding the Latest China-India Military Talks on the Border (2021-08-19)
(The Diplomat, By Antara Ghosal Singh) In their reports of the 12th round of corps commander-level talks, China and India had differing details in almost every respect.

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