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Taiwan thanks U.S. Congress for passing Asia policy bill

ROC Central News Agency

2018/12/18 11:59:30

Taipei, Dec. 18 (CNA) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Tuesday thanked the U.S. Congress for passing the Asia Reassurance Initiative Act, which is aimed at enhancing U.S. leadership in Asia and strengthening cooperation with regional partners, Taiwan included.

The bill, which passed the Senate on Dec. 4 and cleared the floor of the House of Representatives on Dec. 12, seeks to enshrine a long-term strategic vision and comprehensive, multifaceted and principled U.S. policy for the Indo-Pacific that includes checking China's growing influence.

Section 209 of the bill reiterated the U.S.'s commitment to Taiwan, including backing regular U.S. arms sales to Taiwan and encouraging diplomatic and defense contacts between the two sides in line with the Taiwan Relations Act and Six Assurances.

The MOFA said the bill represents further bipartisan support for enhanced Taiwan-U.S. relations following the congressional passage of the Taiwan Travel Act earlier this year, which called for high-level officials from Taiwan to visit the U.S. and high-level U.S. officials to visit Taiwan.

The Asia Reassurance Initiative Act of 2018 still has to be sent to President Donald Trump for review. He can sign the bill into law, veto it, which would put it back in the hands of the House of Representatives, or do nothing.

If he does nothing, known as a pocket veto, the bill would become law 10 days after it is sent to the president if Congress is in session for the full 10 days.

(By Joseph Yeh)

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