European official declares Trump a ‘political pyromaniac’ - Pompeo cancels trip
European official declares Trump a ‘political pyromaniac’ - Pompeo cancels trip
European official declares Trump a ‘political pyromaniac’ — Pompeo cancels trip: report
13 January, 2021, 20:28
The trip, which would have been his last trip overseas during his term was set for Wednesday, a week before President-Elect Joe Biden's inauguration next week.
Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo cancelled his Europe trip at the last minute on Tuesday after Luxembourg's foreign minister and top European Union officials declined to meet with him. He said in a statement that the rules - imposed internally each year for decades - had been put in place "in an attempt to appease the Communist regime in Beijing". "Now we're concluding with this".
"The Europeans snubbed Washington's top envoy days after the storming of the U.S. Capitol by thousands of supporters of President Donald Trump, an unprecedented attack on American democracy that stunned many world leaders and U.S. allies", Reuters reported Tuesday.
Pompeo's spokesman Morgan Ortagus added that the Department of State is canceling "all planned travel this week" amid Biden preparing to announce who he will select for the department's new cabinet posts.
"The fact that they're doing it at the last minute. diminishes the seriousness of the move", said Shelley Rigger, Brown Professor of East Asian Politics at Davidson College.
"Taken earlier, these measures might have been incremental moves toward a big change - diplomatic recognition of Taiwan", she said. Bonnie Glaser, director of the China Power Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington D.C., said the move may have come a bit too late.
Craft had been due to visit Taiwan from Wednesday to Friday, prompting China to warn that Washington was playing with fire. "The problem is that with the Trump administration leaving office in 10 days, the incoming administration is essentially free to approach US-Taiwan relations in the way it wants regardless of what Pompeo has done".
Chinese fighter jets approached the island in August and September during the last two visits - by U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar and U.S. Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Keith Krach, respectively.
With Biden likely to focus on domestic political priorities at the start of his term, Pompeo's abolition of contact restrictions - and the possibility of continued retribution from Beijing - serves as "further impetus to make sure that Taiwan gets the attention it deserves", Goto said.
Asselborn described Trump as a "political pyromaniac who must be brought before a court" over last week's attack on the US Capitol by his supporters.
Pete Hoekstra, the United States ambassador, said on Twitter that Taiwan's representative to the country, Chen Hsing-hsing, had met with him at the embassy on Monday. "Trump had four years to do it, but he didn't".
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The Senate could hold a trial after the inauguration, even though Mr Trump would no longer be in the Oval Office at that point. Adam Kinzinger , a frequent Trump critic, said he would "vote the right way" if the matter were put in front of him.
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