Honduras wants to establish diplomatic relations with China – this would mean that Taiwan would lose one of its last allies in Latin America. The left-wing President of the Central American state, Xiomara Castro, said on Twitter last night (local time) that she had commissioned Foreign Minister Eduardo Reina to lead the process.

There are only 14 countries in the world that recognize the island democratic republic of Taiwan diplomatically – including small Pacific countries, Caribbean islands, states in Central America and the Vatican.

Taiwan has had an independent government since 1949, but China considers the island part of its territory and opposes any form of official diplomatic contact between Taiwan and other countries. Beijing has intensified a campaign to isolate Taiwan internationally for several years. From China’s point of view, there were successes above all in Central America. There, Panama, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Nicaragua broke with Taiwan and established diplomatic relations with China.

Taiwan’s foreign ministry issued a statement on Wednesday, urging Honduras not to also “fall into China’s trap” and make a wrong decision that could harm long-term friendship with Taiwan. Taiwan has repeatedly reminded Honduras that China’s goal is to reduce Taiwan’s support in the international community, not to improve the welfare of the Honduran people through cooperation.

With its one-China doctrine, the communist leadership in Beijing does not allow any country to have relations with both the People’s Republic and Taiwan. Germany also only has an unofficial representation in Taipei.