While US President Donald Trump couldn’t stop talking about his “wonderful relationship” with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Hamburg, his administration back home referred to the latter as the President of Taiwan in an official press release.
Trump, who spent close to 90 minutes with the Chinese premier at the G20 Summit in Germany, told Xi that it was “an honour to have you as a friend”. The White House, in an official press release, called Xi the President of the “Republic of China”, the official name for Taiwan. The official name of Xi’s presidency is the People’s Republic of China, something which the White House failed to take note.
The President of Taiwan is Tsai Ing-wen, who is considered to be a competitor to Xi. She is the strongest woman political figure in the region, the Guardian said in report. Bonnie Glaser, an expert on matters related to China at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, told the newspaper: “It is a bit of a loss of face for Xi Jinping – it probably won’t be too widely reported [in China] and maybe it will give Tsai Ing-wen a good laugh.”
China-US relations had suffered a setback when Trump, shortly after becoming President, spoke to Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen over phone. This angered China and it asked Trump to respect its “one-nation” policy.