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WEST ALLIS, Wis. – Americans who spoke to Fox News in Wisconsin almost all agreed that Taiwan was its own country amid tensions over the island’s independence from China.
“Taiwan is definitely its own country,” one man, Dustin, told Fox News. “It’s its own independent country, and they have a sovereign right to exist.”
Another agreed and said, “China should mind its own business and stay out of this independent country.”
China considers Taiwan its territory, while the island’s government rejects such claims and has operated as a self-governing democracy since 1949. Beijing demands that countries seeking to establish relations with China must severe formal ties with Taiwanalthough the United States maintained informal ties with the island’s government.
“If we want to call Taiwan a country, I think we should,” said one man, Michael. “Frankly, I don’t care if China gets mad.”
“Who are they to tell the United States what to do? Michael added. “We want to maintain decent foreign relations, but they don’t dictate what we do.”
Yet candy maker Mars Wrigley apologized to China last week after a Snickers ad calling Taiwan a country went viral.
“Mars Wrigley respects China’s national sovereignty and territorial integrity and conducts its business activities in strict accordance with local Chinese laws and regulations,” the apology said.
One person said Taiwan “should be” its own country.
“Guess I thought it was,” said another. “It’s probably bad enough for me that I don’t know.”
One attendee, Don, said: “Well, China sort of rules it, but I give Nancy Pelosi a lot of credit for going out there and standing up to the Chinese.”
Pelosi, the Speaker of the House, visited Taiwan earlier this month. In response, Beijing disciplined Pelosi and his immediate family, fired missiles over the island, and held military drills nearby.
“I think China should just leave them alone,” a woman who considers Taiwan an independent nation told Fox News. “Just like [Russian President Vladimir] Putin should leave Ukraine alone.”