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New Paraguay president stresses South American nation’s ties with Taiwan at swearing-in ceremony

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ASUNCIÓN, Paraguay — President Santiago Peña stated Paraguay and Taiwan are “not simply allies, but in addition brothers” when he was sworn in because the South American nation’s new president on Tuesday.

Peña took the presidential oath outdoors the federal government palace within the capital of Asunción in a ceremony attended by a number of regional leaders and Taiwan’s Vice President William Lai.

Paraguay is the one nation in South America, and a member of a dwindling group of 12 governments world wide, to have diplomatic relations with Taiwan. It misplaced a key ally within the area earlier this yr when Honduras lower diplomatic ties with Taiwan.

“We’ll construct alliances and cooperation with a geostrategic imaginative and prescient, searching for horizontal agreements,” Peña stated, noting that the nation’s relationship with Taiwan “is an instance of this and of Paraguay’s pleasant and cooperative spirit with nations for which now we have deep affection and with whom we really feel not solely as allies, but in addition like brothers.”

Earlier than leaving on the journey Saturday, Lai stated his go to to Paraguay was partly “in order that the worldwide society understands Taiwan is a rustic that persists in its democracy, human rights and freedom and actively takes half in worldwide affairs.” Lai stopped in New York en path to Paraguay and was planning to cease in San Francisco on his approach again dwelling.

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When Peña, 44, visited Taiwan in July, he informed President Tsai Ing-wen his nation would “stand with the individuals of Taiwan” throughout his five-year time period.

Peña, an economist, simply received election earlier this yr, conserving the long-ruling Colorado Social gathering in energy for 5 extra years.

Taiwan’s ambassador to Paraguay, José Han, revealed photographs on social media of Lai making chipa, a conventional cheese-flavored roll, and consuming tereré, an infusion standard within the South American nation. “He beloved the standard flavors of Paraguay,” the ambassador wrote.

Taiwan had develop into a thorny problem throughout Paraguay’s presidential marketing campaign as Peña’s important challenger argued the alliance had develop into too pricey as a result of it prevented the small nation from pursuing enterprise alternatives with China.

In his inaugural speech, Peña, a conservative, business-friendly president, praised former President Horacio Cartes (2013-2018), the pinnacle of the Colorado Social gathering who has been accused by Washington of involvement in “important corruption.” The U.S. authorities accuses him of bribing authorities officers and legislators and of getting ties to individuals who increase cash for the Hezbollah group, which Washington has deemed a terrorist group.

“Thanks for persevering, with out faltering, within the building of consensus and within the pursuit of agreements above variations,” Peña stated in phrases addressed to Cartes. “As we speak, it’s our flip to deliver that political calling to the service of all Paraguayans.”

Spain’s King Felipe VI attended the inauguration ceremony as did presidents from the area, together with Luis Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil, Alberto Fernández of Argentina, and Gabriel Boric of Chile.

“Success is ensuring all Paraguayans are higher off, and that the world turns into witness to the resurgence of an enormous,” Peña stated.

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