French senators arrive in Taiwan amid tensions with China

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TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — A group of French senators are in Taiwan for a five-day visit following a large Chinese show of force with fighters jets and escalating diplomatic pressure against the island. The French group will meet with President Tsai Ing-wen, Taiwanese economic and health officials and the Mainland Affairs Council. The group is led by France’s former defense minister, Alain Richard. Taiwanese media reports say China’s ambassador to France had called on Richard to cancel the visit. China claims self-ruled Taiwan as its own territory and has increasingly mobilized military, diplomatic and economic pressure against the island. Chinese fighter jets have flown toward Taiwan 149 times over four days in China’s most recent display of sustained military harassment.

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