Honduran Foreign Minister Is in Beijing; Taiwan Recalls Ambassador from Tegucigalpa
Flash: The Honduran Foreign Ministry issued a communiqué this evening, announcing that Taiwan has been formally notified that Honduras has broken diplomatic relations with it, and the government of Honduras recognizes that there is only one China, of which Taiwan is an inalienable part, and that the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate government of all of China. Honduras further commits itself to having no further official relationship of contact with Taiwan. It’s a done deal!
March 25, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—Taiwan and the U.S. had professed hope that President Xiomara Castro’s March 14 announcement that Honduras intends to establish diplomatic relations with China could be rolled back through sufficient pressure. No longer. Taiwan recalled its ambassador for consultations on Thursday, March 23, after the news broke that Honduran Foreign Minister Eduardo Enrique Reina had left for Beijing to advance the negotiations for establishing relations. “The die is cast,” a senior diplomatic source in Taipei ruefully told Reuters.
President Biden’s Special Advisor to the Americas Chris Dodd, with two National Security Council Western Hemisphere “experts” in tow, had flown into Honduras on Monday, March 20, to meet personally with President Castro on the matter. While the U.S. remains mum about the results of Dodd’s meeting, a spokesman for the American Institute in Taiwan (the would-be U.S. Embassy) assured Taiwan on Friday, March 24, that “regardless of Honduras’s decision, the United States will continue to deepen and expand our engagement with Taiwan,” and “strongly encourage(s) all countries to expand engagement with Taiwan.”
Honduran Foreign Minister Reina, however, told reporters on March 21 that the upshot of the meeting is that the U.S. will “respect” Honduras’s “sovereign decision.” Some promises must have been attempted, given Reina’s comment that “we hope that the offers made by the U.S. government translate into investments for Honduras.” The next day, he was on the plane to Beijing, accompanied by the President’s daughter and son-in-law (both members of Congress). They were to meet with Foreign Minister Qin Gang, Presidential Minister Rodolfo Pastor reported.
The media have made much ado about the report that right before Honduras announced its decision to recognize the P.R.C., Taiwan had turned down a Honduran government request that it purchase $2.5 billion of the country’s debt. But a report by Honduras publication Proceso Digital on the day Reina left for Beijing speaks to the larger reality which led the government to decide to act, despite the U.S. wrath which it would provoke:
“Honduras cannot remain on the sidelines of the benefits which the new world order could bring, said Minister of Transparency Edmundo Orellana on the establishment of relations with China. He pointed out that a new world order is being built in which China plays a preponderant role.... ‘This decision should have been taken at the beginning of this century, but the opportunity is always there, and hopefully we are in time to join that new world order,’ ”
Orellana told the internet daily.