WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is leading an official congressional delegation to Asia on Friday, two sources said, though it’s unclear whether the trip will include a stopover in Taiwan.
One of the sources who reviewed the itinerary on Thursday afternoon said a visit to Taiwan was “tentative”, although the trip will include visits to Asian allies Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and Singapore.
Bloomberg News first reported that Pelosi’s delegation is leaving on Friday, the last day the House is in session before its month-long recess in August.
Pelosi invited top lawmakers to join her on the trip, including Foreign Affairs Chairman Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., and Veterans Affairs Chairman Mark Takano, D-California, who led a delegation of legislators to Taiwan last year.
Takano declined to comment on the trip when approached by NBC News on Thursday afternoon.
Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill also declined to comment. The president’s office has a policy of not discussing lawmakers’ international travel in advance, citing security concerns.
Earlier reports that Pelosi could visit Taiwan have grabbed international headlines and stern warnings from Beijing that it will lead a ‘forceful’ response if it sets foot on the democratic island, which China sees as under his control.
President Joe Biden, who spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday, had raised concerns about Pelosi possibly visiting Taiwan. He said over the weekend that U.S. military officials told him that visiting Taiwan “is not a good idea right now.”
Tensions over Taiwan were among the issues Biden and Xi discussed over the phone.
However, lawmakers from both parties rallied behind Pelosi, urging him to make the trip and underscore US support for the self-governing island.
This is breaking news, please check for updates.