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Press Release

AIT Thanksgiving Tradition

In the past week we have seen a number of press stories which commented on the dinner on the eve of the U.S. Thanksgiving Day holiday, which was hosted by the Director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and attended by President Chen Shui-bian. Some of the commentaries contained wild and even rather amusing interpretations of the event. If the journalists had asked for our explanation before writing the articles, we could have explained that:

The tradition of the Director of AIT inviting the President and his advisors to a dinner on the evening before Thanksgiving is a very old one. Former President Lee Teng-hui attended the Thanksgiving Eve dinner several times. The late Presidents Chiang Chin-kuo and Chiang Kai-shek also attended social functions at the homes of AIT Directors or American ambassadors.

The tradition of the Thanksgiving dinner attended together by the AIT staff and the leadership of Taiwan is a symbol of the strong friendship between our two peoples.