Malawi dumps Taiwan

TAIPEI - Taiwan yesterday denounced its rival China for using money to lure away Malawi after the African country had earlier said it was setting up diplomatic ties with Beijing.

TAIPEI - Taiwan yesterday denounced its rival China for using money to lure away Malawi after the African country had earlier said it was setting up diplomatic ties with Beijing.

"The government of the Republic of China severely condemns China for using a lot of money to lure away our ally as part of its efforts to squeeze Taiwan's international space," Taiwan's vice-foreign minister Tzu-pao Yang said.

The remarks came shortly after Malawi said it had decided to switch its diplomatic recognition from Taiwan to the Chinese government in Beijing.

Yang did not specify how much Beijing might have handed over but said China late last year had offered up to R40billion for Malawi to switch allegiance.

Taiwan and China split in 1949 after a civil war, and Beijing regards Taiwan as a renegade province that will eventually be reunited with the mainland, by force if necessary.

Latin America, the South Pacific and Africa have been the main diplomatic battlegrounds for the two nations. - Sapa-AFP

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