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How will China respond to Nancy Pelosi’s Taiwan visit?

The US House Speaker has infuriated Beijing, while the state of Kansas votes to protect abortion rights.

Nancy Pelosi, the US House Speaker, arrived in Taiwan on Tuesday 2 August to meet President Tsai Ing-wen. Chinese officials had repeatedly warned against her visit to the self-governing island, which Beijing claims as its own territory.

Alix Kroeger in London, and Emily Tamkin and Katie Stallard in Washington DC, discuss why Pelosi went ahead with the visit now and how Beijing is likely to respond in the coming days and weeks as the Chinese navy begins live-fire drills around Taiwan.

Then, the US state of Kansas has become a surprising place for a triumph of abortion rights. On 2 August its residents resoundingly voted to keep abortion protections in the state constitution. The team discuss what this early political victory for supporters of abortion rights tells us and whether, along with the recently brokered Inflation Reduction Act, there’s cause for cautious optimism among the Democrats.

Then in You Ask Us, a listener asks about the background to this weekend’s dispute in Kosovo.

If you have a You Ask Us question for the international team, email podcasts@newstatesman.co.uk.

Podcast listeners can subscribe to the New Statesman for just £1 a week for 12 weeks using our special offer. Just visit newstatesman.com/podcastoffer.

Further reading:

Emily Tamkin on why a bid to strip away abortion rights in Kansas backfired.

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Katie Stallard on Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan.

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Alix Kroeger says that the flurry of alarm over Kosovo reveals underlying tensions.

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