Lawmakers travel to US and Europe over summer vacation

Lawmakers from parliamentary friendship groups with Poland, Slovakia and Hungary are due to meet EU lawmakers and visit Ukrainian refugees in Poland

Several groups of lawmakers were due to leave yesterday for the United States, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary to conduct “parliamentary diplomacy” during the Yuan legislative recess.

The delegation to the United States is led by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Johnny Chiang (江啟臣), who is also the organizer of the legislature’s Diplomacy and National Defense Committee. The group is to visit Washington; Phoenix, Arizona; and LA.

Members of the group are scheduled to meet with U.S. lawmakers who have previously been to Taiwan, including U.S. Representative Mario Diaz Balart, co-chair of the Congressional Taiwan Caucus, Chiang said.

Delegates are also scheduled to meet with U.S. Representative Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) and a number of senior U.S. officials, visit Taiwanese businessmen, and participate in overseas compatriots’ activities to strengthen relations. Taipei-Washington relations, Chiang added.

Other members of the delegation are KMT legislators Wu Sz-huai (吳斯懷), Yeh Yu-lan (葉毓蘭), Lee De-wei (李德維) and Hung Mong-kai (洪孟楷).

Legislators from other delegations are members of parliamentary friendship associations with Poland, Slovakia and Hungary.

Lawmakers are due to meet their counterparts from the three European countries and visit non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and refugee centers in Poland that have taken in Ukrainians fleeing Russia’s war on their country.

Meanwhile, independent lawmaker Freddy Lim (林昶佐) and Democratic Progressive Party lawmaker Hung Sun-han (洪申翰) are due to return from Washington after attending the Eighth Global Convention of Parliamentarians on Tibet.

Hung wrote on Facebook that he and Lim also visited the US State Department and several local NGOs.

They also met with Nury Turkel, chairman of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, and Damon Wilson, president and CEO of the National Endowment for Democracy, Hung wrote.

Legislators typically travel overseas in the summer during the Legislative Yuan vacation before the body reopens in September.

However, they have rarely traveled for the past two years due to travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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