June 20 : The United States has announced that 2.5 million COVID vaccine doses were on their way to Taiwan, more than tripling Washington’s previous allocation of shots for the island, which has faced increasing political and military pressure from China.
Washington, competing with Beijing to deepen geopolitical clout through so-called “vaccine diplomacy”, had initially promised to donate 750,000 doses to Taiwan but increased that number as President Joe Biden’s administration advances its pledge to send 80 million US-made shots around the world.
China expressed fury earlier this month when US senators visited Taiwan and announced the vaccine donation amid simmering tensions between Washington and Beijing.
Wheels up! Our donation of 2.5 million vaccine doses is on the way to Taiwan, whose health partnership with the U.S. helped save lives here and around the world. @StateDept is proud to support @POTUS’ commitment to help the world defeat COVID-19. pic.twitter.com/J0rgy753bs— Ned Price (@StateDeptSpox) June 19, 2021
“Wheels up! Our donation of 2.5 million vaccine doses is on the way to Taiwan,” State Department spokesman Ned Price wrote in a tweet on Saturday.
China, which considers Taiwan an integral part of its territory, has repeatedly offered to send coronavirus vaccines to the island, which has been battling a spike in domestic infections. Taipei has expressed concern about the safety of Chinese shots.
From : Aljazeera