SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is in Taiwan Tuesday in a move that both Russian and Chinese government officials have warned could heighten tensions across hemispheres.

It’s the first time a U.S. Speaker of the House has visited the island nation in 25 years. China views Taiwan as something of a rogue province that still belongs to the mainland. They’re not happy to see a U.S. politician potentially legitimizing Taiwan’s sovereignty.

22News talked to Gary Lefort, an Associate Professor of International Business at American International College, “When a government like the United States makes a liaison visit to Taiwan, they feel that’s jeopardizing that international perception, that maybe Taiwan could be or should be an independent country of its own.”

Taiwan was a part of China but during the Chinese Civil War in the 1900s, defeated members of the KMT government fled there and declared themselves independent.