In view of the growing tensions with China, members of the Bundestag's human rights committee want to send a signal of support for the democratic island republic with a visit to Taiwan that begins on Sunday.
As the head of the delegation, Peter Heidt (FDP), told the German Press Agency, the visit, which lasted until Wednesday, is about "that we want to work closely together" and to stand up for "Taiwan's independence".
The group of six MPs from the FDP, SPD, Greens and Union do not want to be impressed by China's resistance. "If we allow ourselves to be intimidated, then China will think, well, they won't do anything anyway," said Heidt. "And then the danger that Taiwan will be taken over by force will increase."
Tensions had recently intensified. China regards the democratic island republic as only part of the People's Republic and rejects such official contacts from other countries to Taipei. There are also threats of conquest. In response to the visit of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in early August, China launched large-scale maneuvers.
The lawmakers will receive a high-level reception in Taipei and will also meet Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen on Monday. After the Circle of Friends for Relations with Taiwan, this is the second Bundestag delegation to travel to Taipei this month. The visit had led to an upset in relations with China. Chancellor Olaf Scholz travels to Beijing in early November.
FDP politician Heidt said that Germany must of course maintain dialogue with an important country like China. However, one of the lessons learned from dealing with Russia is that Germany must also reduce its dependence on China. "I have serious concerns that we want to sell an important infrastructure such as the port of Hamburg to the Chinese," said Heidt. "I think that's a big mistake." Security authorities also warned against it. "That speaks volumes."
A visit to Hong Kong was originally planned as part of the trip to Asia, which will also take the members of the Human Rights Committee to Japan. However, nothing came of the project because of resistance from the authorities in the Chinese special administrative region.