China arranged the cut in ties by Burkina Faso, Taiwan's foreign ministry said in a statement Thursday without saying how it did so. China denies this, and says Taiwan is a part of China with no right to formal diplomatic ties with any other country.
In a statement, the foreign minister of the African country, Alpha Barry, said the decision had been driven by "the evolution of the world and the socio-economic challenges of our country and region push us to reconsider our position".
The Chinese are now, more than ever, of the view that the Taiwanese government wants to become an internationally accepted and independent state.
China sees democratic Taiwan-which has never formally declared independence from the mainland-as a renegade part of its territory to be brought back into the fold, by force if necessary.
"We will no longer be forbearing, and instead become more determined" in seeking global partnerships, Ms. Tsai said, adding that Taiwan wouldn't counter Chinese "dollar diplomacy" with similar tactics.
Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu told university students in Taipei that Taiwan needed allies to give it a voice on the worldwide stage, as the island was excluded from most forums like the United Nations due to China's objections.
"Taiwan absolutely can not abandon this responsibility", Wu said, according to media.
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China has resorted to military and diplomatic threats to coerce Taiwan into accepting its "one China" principle, an approach that shows Beijing is frightened by Taiwan's democracy, according to MAC.
Tsai, who took offer in 2016, says she wants to maintain the status quo, but will protect Taiwan's security and not be bullied by Beijing.
China is Africa's largest trade partner, with massive investments in mining, construction and banking, although it has been less active to date in Burkina.
In March, China said it was in the best interests of Taiwan's allies to recognize an "irresistible trend" and ditch Taipei in favor of "one China" ruled by Beijing.
The official Central News Agency reported Thursday that the West African nation's move means Taiwan is recognized as a sovereign nation by only 18 mainly small, developing countries.
Some countries have switched back and forth between Beijing and Taipei several times. His ministry accused Beijing of working to end Taiwan's 24-year relationship with Burkina Faso.