The Taiwanese government lodged a protest with the United Nations on Saturday after a Taiwanese reporter was refused entry into UN headquarters.

Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Andrew Lee said that the government has asked the organisation not to discriminate against Taiwanese citizens as per its principles of equality and fairness, according to the state-run Central News Agency.

Photo: UN.

A Taiwanese reporter from United Daily News said that she was denied entry into the UN headquarters in New York earlier this month after she had presented building security with both a Republic of China passport and a Mainland Travel Permit issued by Chinese authorities.

She had reportedly booked a guided tour of UN facilities but was told that she would have to produce a People’s Republic of China passport to be allowed in.

United Daily News office in Taipei. Photo: Wikicommons.

Taiwan – officially known as the Republic of China – was a member of the UN until 1971, after the General Assembly voted to recognise Beijing as China’s ruling government. Its most recent request for admission was denied in 2007. However, a coalition led by the United States subsequently forced the global body and its secretary-general to stop using the phrase “Taiwan is a part of China.” Taiwanese citizens are not allowed to enter UN buildings, though – in previous years – the UN told Taiwanese citizens that they could enter using their national identity cards.

Two Taiwanese government officials travelled to New York last month to promote the island’s achievement of the UN’s sustainable development goals.

In their UN leaders addresses, four of Taiwan’s 17 diplomatic allies – Swaziland, Kiribati, Nauru and Palau – expressed support for Taiwan’s membership into the UN.

Jennifer Creery

Jennifer Creery is a Hong Kong-born British journalist, interested in minority rights and urban planning. She holds a BA in English at King's College London and has studied Mandarin at National Taiwan University.