Taiwan’s president landed in Houston Saturday in the southern state of Texas on her way to visit Central America.
President Tsai Ing-wen will not be meeting with U.S. President-elect Donald Trump or any of his officials, the transition team said, despite a surprise call between the two leaders last month.
Tsai had not said who she might contact while in Houston for about a day on her way to Central America or in San Francisco for about the same length of time enroute home later on.
The de facto U.S. embassy in Taipei – the American Institute in Taiwan – says Tsai’s stopovers, a courtesy Washington normally gives Latin America-bound Taiwan leaders, are for private business only.
The trip, viewed in Taiwan as a test of Taiwan’s stable but fragile foreign relations in the Americas, has drawn attention in Beijing, which already protested the U.S. stopovers and is expected to react if Tsai shows new signs of getting close to Trump.
China sees self-ruled Taiwan as part of its territory, not as a state entitled to foreign relations.
Tsai is to visit Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador during her nine-day trip.