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International relations

Taiwan makes soft power grab for Europe's Mandarin learners

Push comes as China's Confucius Institutes face global headwinds

A screenshot from Taiwan Center for Mandarin Learning YouTube site showing an instructor teaching the Chinese language.

HAMBURG, Germany -- Taiwanese centers for learning Mandarin are springing up in Germany, taking the place of Chinese facilities as universities grow wary of Beijing's influence on their academic freedom.

The expansion comes as Taipei increasingly turns to soft power to compete with China, which views Taiwan as a breakaway province to be brought under its control by force if necessary.

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