Taiwan loses second ally in a month as Burkina Faso cuts ties

Burkina Faso established diplomatic relations with China days after breaking ties with Taiwan

This move comes after the West African nation pledged in early 2017 to stick by Taipei, reportedly refusing a hefty investment offer from Beijing, and as China has been increasingly leveraging its economic and diplomatic clout to put pressure on Taiwan-a self-governed nation that Beijing considers an "inalienable part of China."

Tensions between China and Taiwan hiked with the election of Ms Tsai in 2016, after which five countries cut their ties with Taiwan.

Taiwan has accused China of using dollar diplomacy to lure away its allies, promising generous aid packages, charges China has denied.

Independence-leaning President Tsai Ing-wen told reporters that Taiwan would only work harder at cooperating with other countries.

Beijing sees Taiwan as a renegade province and has stepped up military action and pressure on its global space since Tsai Ing-wen from the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party became the self-ruled island's president two years ago. She says she wants to maintain the status quo.

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The move to dump the island, which is left with only 18 diplomatic allies around the world, sparked the resignation of Taiwan's foreign minister, Joseph Wu.

Taiwan is China's most sensitive territorial issue.

Japanese retailer Muji was fined after being found to be using packaging that listed Taiwan as a country while United States retailer Gap Inc issued an apology last week for selling a T-shirt which it said had an incorrect map of China.

"We hope this country can join the big China-Africa family of friendship as soon as possible". It last did so in 1973, before resuming relations with Taipei in 1994.

The people of Taiwan should not be alarmed as the air force was well able to monitor the PLA aircraft as they approached and during their missions and could ensure Taiwan's security, the ministry added.

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Tsai has lashed out at China's "crude behaviours" since Burkina Faso broke ties.

Burkina is the fifth country to cut ties with Taiwan since Tsai came to office, following the Dominican Republic, Gambia, Sao Tome and Principe and Panama.

"We will not make any concessions", she was quoted as saying by the Central News Agency on Saturday.

The government of Burkina Faso recognizes that there is but one China in the world, that the government of the People's Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China, and that Taiwan is an inalienable part of China's territory.

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