Local think tank Prospect Foundation hosted a speech at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Taipei hosted on Friday, March 4, for former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Pompeo said, “It is my view that the U.S. government should immediately take necessary, and long-overdue, steps to do the right and obvious thing: that is to offer the Republic of China, Taiwan, America’s diplomatic recognition as a free and sovereign country.”

The former secretary of state added, “While the United States should continue to engage with the People’s Republic of China as a sovereign government, America’s diplomatic recognition of the 23 million freedom-loving Taiwanese people and its legal, democratically-elected government can no longer be ignored, avoided, or treated as secondary.”

Pompeo also addressed the threat posed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) as “the central threat of our time.” He said China had failed to fulfill the commitment with Ukraine to “support to each other on issues concerning national sovereignty and territorial integrity,” citing the “China-Ukraine” strategic partnership.

He said: “As we’ve learned so painfully—and especially you, the Taiwanese people, who have seen it firsthand—over the past few decades, China did not become freer as it became richer.”

He added: “The long list of the CCP’s malign acts reflects communist China’s vision for global dominance. The dark future of a world under a communist dictatorship, empowered by economic strength and next generation technologies, has become more and more realistic.”

The remarks came during Pompeo’s visit to Taiwan. On March 3, Pompeo met Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, who awarded him top presidential honors.

Responding to Pompeo, Wang Wenbin, China’s foreign ministry spokesman, said, “Pompeo is a former politician whose credibility has long gone bankrupt. Such a person’s babbling nonsense will have no success.”

Beijing says Taiwan is the most critical and sensitive issue in its relations with Washington.

Over the last two years, China has increased its military and diplomatic pressure on Taiwan to persuade the island to recognize its sovereignty.

Taiwan’s democratically elected government declares that it seeks peace but will defend itself if attacked and that only the people of the island have the right to decide their future.

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