By Jing (Jenny) Li
What: Tonga switched diplomatic recognition from Taiwan to Beijing
Who: 'Ulukalala-Lavaka-Ata (Tonga); Tang Jiaxuan (China).
Mr. Tang Jiaxuan (Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China) and His Royal Highness Prince 'Ulukalala-Lavaka-Ata (Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Defense of the Kingdom of Tonga) signed the Joint Communiqué on the establishment of the diplomatic relations at the ambassard level on October 26, 1998. Tonga recognized the People's Republic of China as the sole legal government representing the whole of China and Taiwan as an inalienable part of the Chinese territory. The opening of the full diplomatic ties between two countries took place on November 2, 1998. Tonga's switching diplomatic recognition to Beijing reduced the number of Taiwan's allies to 26. Taiwan ended its twenty-six year relationship with Tonga and all the aid agreements.
This topic includes the stories on signing the Joint Communiqué; establishing full diplomatic ties between Tonga and China; Taiwan's (& other countries') reactions to Tonga's switching, and its direct results. The comments on China's diplomatic policy or strategies and other island nations' switching diplomatic ties from Taipei to Beijing are on topic if Tonga's switching is mentioned.
Note: This topic is one episode of the on-going diplomatic tug-of-war between Beijing and Taipei. Topic labeling should be limited to this specific case.
10/13-16/1998 Tongan Princess was invited to visit Taiwan after Taipei was informed the possibility of Tonga's switching to Beijing.
10/26/1998 Tonga and China singed a joint communiqué on the establishment of diplomatic relationship. Tonga was the fourth country wooed away from Taipei by Beijing this year following South Africa, the Central African Republic and Guinea-Bissau.
11/02/1998 The opening of full diplomatic ties between
Tonga and China.
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