Two US Navy warships sail through Taiwan Strait

Lien Chan has met Xi Jinping on several occasions

The Chinese government, which cut off all diplomatic relations to the small island in 2016, claimed for decades that Taiwan is part of China's territory and will use force to conquer it if needed.

The decision to name Taiwan, "Chinese Taipei" instead of "Taiwan, China" is innovative, however, because this is Taiwan's official name in global organizations like the Olympic Games, the Federation Internationale de Football Association, or the World Health Organization.

Flags of Taiwan and U.S. are placed for a meeting between U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce speaks and with Su Chia-chyuan, President of the Legislative Yuan in Taipei, Taiwan March 27, 2018.

Word of the transit was first made public by a statement from Taiwan's Defense Ministry that said the identified the two ships by their hull numbers.

Against the backdrop of tense cross-strait relations and U.S. -Sino relations strained by trade issues, the U.S. Navy sailed two of its Arleigh-Burke guided missile destroyers through the strait over the weekend, which it said was a routine voyage that has been carried out for many years.

China maintains Taiwan is a breakaway province and not an independent nation.

Washington has no formal ties with Taiwan but is bound by law to help it defend itself and is the island's main source of arms.

Beijing has also managed to deplete Taipei's diplomatic allies, luring away four since Tsai came to power and leaving it with only 18 countries worldwide that recognize it over China.

The national airline is the latest to fall in line with China's demands to drop references to Taiwan as a separate entity.

Relations between the United States and Taiwan have warmed recently as President Donald Trump signed legislation paving the way for mutual visits by top officials and the USA government approved a licence required to sell submarine technology to Taiwan.

Liu said that Taiwan should refrain from abetting the U.S.in playing the Taiwan card because that would not be in the interests of people on both sides of the strait. Even so, China expressed "grave concern" over the passage.

Koh also said the move was unlikely to be a one-off, adding that Beijing would continue to apply pressure on Taipei. "So there'll be no rolling back by China".

Former Taiwan Vice President Lien Chan, of Taiwan's pro-China and former ruling Nationalist Party, is scheduled to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing next week.

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