COMMENTARY: Saint Lucia’s diplomatic folly

IAN FRANCIS, Caribbean News Now

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Ian Francis

With fairness to the government of St Lucia, it has the prerogative right to establish and maintain diplomatic relations with nations that are in its national interest. From a vantage point, I am inclined to understand and accept St Lucia’s logic in the case of Venezuela, Bolivia or Brazil.

However, it becomes very illogical and confusing to many regional political observers and commentators on St Lucia’s recent foreign policy decision to maintain diplomatic relations with Taiwan which is a breakaway province of the People’s Republic of China. By St Lucia making such an ill-conceived foreign policy decision, it is letting the global community know that the nation of St Lucia, and in particular the St Lucia Labour Party administration, fully recognizes Taiwan as a nation and totally ignores the legitimacy of Beijing.

The St Lucia government see-saw and misguided policy on Taiwan started in 1984 when the then John Compton United Workers Party (UWP) established diplomatic relations with the renegade province. The diplomatic love-in between St Lucia and Taiwan came to a halt in 1997 when the Kenny Anthony-led administration switched diplomatic allegiance and recognized Beijing.

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