Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Gov. Greg Abbott met with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen in Houston on Sunday, a move that is likely to further fuel tensions with China. Tsai’s visit came amid objections from Beijing, which asked U.S. authorities to bar her visit. Cruz said the Chinese consulate had also sent a “curious letter” urging lawmakers to “uphold the one-China policy,” according to which Taiwan is a part of China. But Cruz seemed indignant about China’s appeal, saying in a statement released Sunday that “the People’s Republic of China needs to understand that in America we make decisions about meeting with visitors for ourselves.” “This is about the U.S. relationship with Taiwan, an ally we are legally bound to defend. The Chinese do not give us veto power over those with whom they meet. We will continue to meet with anyone, including the Taiwanese, as we see fit,” he said. Cruz and Abbott both said they had discussions with Tsai on various aspects of bilateral relations. The meeting seems sure to inflame China’s anger over Taiwan after President-elect Donald Trump sparked an uproar in Beijing by speaking with Taiwan’s president by phone after the election, a move that broke with decades of diplomatic protocol.
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