A delegation of French senators will visit Taiwan in early October. That’s the word from a report in the French publication La Lettre A, which says the trip will take place between October 4 and October 11.
Senator Alain Richard, who heads the French Senate’s Taiwan Friendship Group, will lead the delegation. Richard visited Taiwan in 2015 and 2018 and has promoted exchanges between Taiwan and France. He also helped pass the first resolution in the French Senate supporting Taiwan’s participation in international organizations. Richard was Minister of Defence from 1997 to 2002.
Taiwan’s foreign ministry welcomes the visit and is working with Richard to arrange the itinerary which will adhere to Taiwan’s pandemic prevention measures.
The delegation will also include Max Brisson and André Vallini who are vice presidents of the friendship group and Olivier Cadic, the group's secretary.
The foreign ministry said Richard began planning a trip to Taiwan in March. Back then, Chinese Ambassador to France Lu Shaye sent a letter to Richard protesting the visit. In response to this, the French foreign ministry told Lu that senators are free to make their own travel plans and choose who they want to interact with.
The ministry has not revealed the details of the delegation’s plans, but in March, Richard said the main purpose of his trip visit would be to see how Taiwan has dealt with COVID-19 and its economic progress. Officials from the two countries would also discuss France and Taiwan's foreign policy strategies.