China Accuses US of Meddling Over Potential US Navy Visits to Taiwan

14 December, 2017, 19:29 | Author: Wade Massey
  • China fumes over potential US navy visits to Taiwan

Reacting to a Chinese diplomat's statement in Washington - in which he said the Chinese military will unify Taiwan with military force if a United States warship docked at the Kaohsiung port in Taiwan - Lee called it "unbelievable" and "counterproductive".

China has accused the US of interfering in its internal affairs, that it lodged a complaint after President Donald Trump signed into law an act laying the groundwork for possible USA navy visits to Taiwan.

Such visits would be the first since the USA ended formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan in 1979 and established ties with Beijing.

Lu Kang added Beijing is opposed to any official exchanges, military contact or arms sales between the USA and Taiwan.

Trump mended ties by vowing to uphold the One China Policy shortly before Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to his Florida Mar-a-Lago resort, but infuriated Beijing again this summer by approving a US$1.3 billion (RM5.3 billion) arms sale to Taiwan.

Taiwan's presidential spokesman, Alex Huang, told reporters in Taiwan on Wednesday the defense ministry responded immediately to the patrols.

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Taiwan "can ensure there are no concerns at all about national security, and people can rest assured", Huang said.

Both sides of the narrow Taiwan Strait, which separates Taiwan from its giant neighbour, have a responsibility to protect peace and stability, he added. Taiwan is well armed, mostly with US weaponry, but has been pressing Washington to sell it more high-tech equipment to better deter China.

Relations between China and Taiwan have deteriorated since the leader of Taiwan's independence-leading Democratic Progressive Party, Tsai Ing-wen, won presidential elections in 2016.

Numerous Chinese fighter jets, bombers and surveillance aircraft conducted "routine" and "planned" distant sea patrols on Monday to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity, Air Force spokesman Shen Jinke said on the military branch's microblog.

China considers self-ruled and democratic Taiwan to be its sacred territory and has never renounced the use of force to bring what it views as a wayward province under Chinese control.

Beijing wants Taiwan, which has been effectively independent since 1950, to be reunited with mainland China. The United States has no formal ties with Taiwan but is bound by law to help it defend itself and is its main source of arms.

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