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This Is How Taiwanese And Chinese People Are Reacting To Trump's Surprise Phone Call

"I'm starting to like Trump."

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News broke on Friday that US President-elect Donald Trump had spoken directly on the phone with the president of Taiwan.

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It is believed to be the first phone call between a US president or president-elect and Taiwan's president since the US cut diplomatic ties with Taiwan in 1979 as part of its recognition of the People's Republic of China.

According to a readout of the call provided by Trump’s transition team, the president-elect spoke with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen and noted the two nation’s “close economic, political and security ties.”

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The phone call was later condemned by China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who called it a "petty action by the Taiwan side."


The reactions were quite mixed, with some opposing the phone call.

"The Republic of China is China."

Many saw it as constructive and perhaps the sign of bigger things to come.

"A phone call isn't bad! Tsai's only become president but has already achieved so much more in foreign affairs than former president Ma Ying-jeou did in his eight years."


However, some were more skeptical of the significance of the phone call.

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"And then? Do you really think Taiwan and the US can restore diplomatic relations with just a phone call?"


"There's no way that there was no hotline between the two before? It was just not formally announced to keep from provoking China! Now that Tsai's government is so open with it, there's no doubt going to be a lot to see."


In China, meanwhile, the frustration was directed towards Trump.

"Obama looks on solemnly. 1.3 billion people look at Twitter with tears in their eyes."

"I don't know how he became president... This might be a joke in American history."

"Trump obviously does not understand diplomatic protocol. I bet the White House is giving him a cram session on the Taiwan problem right now."

"Trump says one thing that makes him feel good, and the whole country has to go to the crematorium."

"Did no one else notice the wording "the president of Taiwan"?? Excuse me, Taiwan has a president???"

"So straightforward to the point he has no brain. I'm about to cry from how idiotic he is."

Kassy Cho is a reporter with BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Kassy Cho at

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