JOHANNESBURG � Taiwan's new president makes her first trip to Africa this week to visit one of the island's two remaining allies on the continent. Support for Taiwan has diminished in Africa over the past decade, as billions of dollars in Chinese investment have flowed into the continent.
But the tiny African kingdom of Swaziland says it welcomes Taiwan's president, Tsai Ing-wen, as she makes her first visit to the landlocked kingdom that is one of Taiwan's oldest allies.
Jennifer Neves, Swaziland's undersecretary for international cooperation in the foreign ministry, spoke to VOA on Tuesday as she headed to the airport to receive Tsai for the four-day visit.
Taiwan, she said, has long funded a range of agricultural, industrial and vocational programs in Swaziland.
"For 50 years, our relationship has been characterized by principled engagement, a deep sense of mutual respect, fraternity and loyalty," Neves said. "And these are all attributes that successive heads of state of our kingdom value in our cosmetic and popular global politics."
Pressure to abandon Taiwan
China claims Taiwan as its own and has, in recent years, ramped up pressure on African nations to drop their ties with Taiwan, as Taiwan has moved toward seeking formal independence from China.
Source: Voice of America