On the evening of March 30 local time (morning of March 31 Taipei time), as part of the "Meeting Democratic Partners, Fostering Shared Prosperity" diplomatic trip, President Tsai Ing-wen attended an event held by the Hudson Institute, where she accepted the institute's Global Leadership Award from Board of Trustees Chair Sarah May Stern and President and CEO John P. Walters.
The Global Leadership Award, established by the Hudson Institute, honors an international leader who has made outstanding contributions to the world and possesses extraordinary qualities of moral courage, foresight, and strategic vision; along with the Herman Kahn Award for service to US national security, it is considered one of the institute's highest honors. In conferring this award to commend outstanding leadership, the Hudson Institute cited President Tsai's "great courage and clear-eyed determination" in leading democratic Taiwan to resist coercion and maintain a free and open Indo-Pacific during her terms of office.
After receiving the award that evening, President Tsai delivered an address and spoke with event attendees, emphasizing five major points as follows:
1. This award is a tribute to the resilience demonstrated by the people of Taiwan in the face of tremendous challenges. With the courage and persistence of the people of Taiwan, and the support from our US friends, Taiwan began its democratic transition and eventually brought an end to over three decades of martial law. Today, Taiwan stands with like-minded countries in pursuit of peace, prosperity, and the defense of democracy.
2. The PRC's escalation of tension is evident, but Taiwan's response has been measured and composed, demonstrating to the world that we are the responsible cross-strait stakeholder. The Taiwanese people want peace, not conflict, and history tells us that the best way to avoid war is through building strength.
3. While Taiwan's ties with the world's democracies have grown stronger in recent years, we have continued to be excluded from participating in the functions of the UN and its affiliated international organizations. Such unjust conditions cannot stand. Taiwan needs support from our fellow democracies to facilitate participation in international organizations.
4. Because an unstable Taiwan Strait poses serious economic and security risks to the entire world, it is all the more important for us to safeguard the peace and stability of the region. This means not only increasing our security cooperation, but also facilitating a stronger, more robust economic partnership.
5. Taiwan is a resilient society that believes in the power of democracy, but we cannot solve 21st-century challenges or push back against authoritarianism alone. We will continue to work with the United States and other like-minded democracies to demonstrate that democracy can deliver and that Taiwan is committed to safeguarding our way of life.