Taiwan, island in East Asia. Taiwan is bordered on the west by the Taiwan Strait, which separates the island from mainland China, on the north by the East China Sea, on the east by the Pacific Ocean, and on the south by the South China Sea. The government on Taiwan also administers the P’enghu Islands (Pescadores), the Chinmen Islands (Quemoy Islands) offshore from the mainland city of Xiamen, and the Matsu Islands offshore from Fuzhou, the capital of Fujian Province.
The government that administers Taiwan calls itself the Republic of China. Leaders of the government moved to the island from the Chinese mainland in 1949, when Communist armies gained control of the mainland and established the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The government on Taiwan recognizes the mainland city of Nanjing (spelled Nanking in Taiwan) as its official capital, and designates Taiwan’s largest city of Taipei as its temporary capital. The PRC does not recognize the government on Taiwan and considers the island a renegade province. Taiwan recognizes that the Communist government rules the Chinese mainland while the republican government rules Taiwan.
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