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'People's Republic of Comedy': Lithuanian MP Blasts China Amid Taiwan Spat

© AP Photo / Andy WongFILE - In this April 14, 2016 file photo, a Chinese national flag flutters against the office buildings in Shanghai, China
FILE - In this April 14, 2016 file photo, a Chinese national flag flutters against the office buildings in Shanghai, China - Sputnik International, 1920, 04.12.2021
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Beijing and Vilnius verbally clashed last month, with China downgrading its links to Lithuania after the latter allowed Taiwan to open a representative office in the country.
Lithuanian MP Matas Maldeikis, who led an official delegation to Taiwan earlier this week, has blasted China, calling it the "People's Republic of Comedy" during a dispute on relations with Taipei.
Responding to a tweet by Hu Xijing, editor-in-chief of the Global Times, Maldeikis said President Xi Jinping was "sending his clown" to attack Lithuania.
Reports also suggest that Lithuania has been removed from China's custom's registry, meaning that Lithuanian goods cannot enter Chinese ports.
The cooldown between the two nations started last month, when Lithuania allowed the opening of a Taiwanese Representative Office - which caused a backlash from Beijing, since other offices in European countries (and even in the United States) are named after Taipei, and do not mention Taiwan itself.
Taiwan has been separated from the mainland since the end of the civil war in 1949. China considers it to be a breakaway province, while Taiwan — a territory with its own government — maintains that it is an autonomous country.
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