Rep. Gooden Introduces Bill to Support Taiwan’s Inclusion in Interpol

The bill would create a strategy to obtain Taiwan’s membership not just in Interpol, but other international organizations such as the WHO.
Rep. Gooden Introduces Bill to Support Taiwan’s Inclusion in Interpol
The Interpol logo during the 89th Interpol General Assembly in Istanbul on Nov. 23, 2021. (Ozan Kose/AFP via Getty Images)
Jacob Burg

Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Texas) on May 15 unveiled the Taiwan Interpol Endorsement and Inclusion Act, which would require the U.S. administration to advocate for the democratic island’s membership in the international police organization.

The bill, first obtained by The Epoch Times, acknowledges Taiwan’s role in maintaining global peace and asks the U.S. government, including the president or his “designees,” to advocate directly for Taiwan’s inclusion in Interpol and any other “appropriate international organizations.” It suggests that leaving Taiwan out of Interpol, a global collective police force, is harmful to international crime-fighting efforts.

Co-sponsored by Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.), the bill states that Taiwan is an “important contributor to peace and stability around the world.”

Since the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, U.S. policy has been to “preserve and promote extensive, close, and friendly commercial, cultural, and other relations between the people of the United States and the people of Taiwan.” In 1994, this was extended to the Taiwan Policy Review to support the country in participating in various international organizations.

Taiwan, a self-governing island claimed by the Chinese regime even though it has never been ruled by the Chinese Communist Party, has been excluded from participation from international bodies due to Beijing’s objections.

Mr. Gooden’s bill asks the United States to “advocate, as appropriate” for Taiwan’s full membership status in all “appropriate international organizations,” including Interpol. It instructs U.S. government representatives to “use the voice, vote, and influence of the United States” to push for Taiwan’s membership or “observer status” in those organizations.

Additionally, the bill instructs the U.S. president or his “designees” to use any “relevant bilateral engagements” between the Chinese regime and the United States, including leader summits and the U.S.-China Comprehensive Economic Dialogue.

It seeks to develop a strategy to make Taiwan a member of Interpol and other related organizations to include Taiwan in global crime-fighting efforts.

Mr. Gooden said that Taiwan has shown a capacity to “significantly contribute to international efforts, particularly in areas like drug control and global crime fighting.”

“It is common sense for Taiwan to be included as a full member in global security bodies like Interpol to enhance mutual safety and security.”

The bill notes that Taiwan was granted a full Interpol membership in 1964 but was ejected in 1984 when the People’s Republic of China applied for membership.

Additionally, the World Health Assembly, the decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO), granted Taiwan “observer status” between 2009 and 2016 under the name “Chinese Taipei.” During that time, Taiwan contributed “significantly” to international efforts in pandemic control, monitoring, early warning, and “other related matters.”

However, since 2016, the World Health Assembly has rejected further bids to include Taiwan as an observer. A group of bipartisan senators sent a May 15 letter asking WHO to include Taiwan in the organization.

“Taiwan is unable to swiftly share information on criminals and suspicious activity with the international community, leaving a huge void in global crime-fighting efforts and leaving the entire world at risk,” the bill states.

Mr. Gooden says that leaving Taiwan out of Interpol affects global security.

“Denying Taiwan membership in Interpol does not just hurt Taiwan; it leaves a gap in the global security network that criminals can exploit,” he said.

The bill suggests that including Taiwan as a member of Interpol is “beneficial for all nations and their police authorities,” as information sharing is “vital to peacekeeping efforts.”

The bill asks for a report no later than 90 days after it is enacted that details the United States strategy for obtaining Taiwan’s observer or membership status within Interpol and other appropriate international organizations, possibly the WHO as well.

“Including this key U.S. ally as a full member in Interpol is not only about supporting Taiwan but reinforcing the integrity and effectiveness of international law enforcement cooperation,” Mr. Gooden said.

Jacob Burg reports on the state of Florida for The Epoch Times. He covers a variety of topics including crime, politics, science, education, wildlife, family issues, and features. He previously wrote about sports, politics, and breaking news for the Sarasota Herald Tribune.