China will respond with: “decisive and tough measures” if Washington continues military cooperation with Taiwan, Chinese Embassy spokesman in Washington Liu Pengyu said Monday. The statement came after Politico reported that the Joe Biden administration plans to ask lawmakers to approve an estimated $1.1 billion arms sale to the island.
US arms sales to Taiwan represent a “clear violation” of the “one China” policy and other diplomatic agreements between the US and China, Liu told TASS news agency when asked about the reported arms transfer. Such deals too “encourage separatists” and tensions in the Taiwan Strait are escalating, the spokesman added.
“On the US side, arms sales to and military contact with Taiwan must be immediately stopped, they must stop creating factors that could lead to tensions in the Taiwan Strait, and the US government must not support the ‘independence of Taiwan’, “ emphasized the diplomat.
Liu went on to say that China would take “decisive and determined” act to defend its sovereignty and security interests.
According to sources quoted by Politico, the weapons package for Taiwan under consideration by the Biden administration will include 60 AGM-84L Harpoon Block II anti-ship missiles for $355 million, 100 AIM-9X Block II Sidewinder air-to-air missiles for $85, 6 million, as well as a surveillance radar contract extension worth approximately $655.4 million.
Tensions in the Taiwan Strait have been running high since early August, when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taipei, despite repeated warnings from Beijing. The controversial trip sent US-China relations into a tailspin and sparked several rounds of Chinese military exercises in the area.
China deploys ships and jets near Taiwan — Taipei
Beijing considers Taiwan part of China and views visits by senior foreign officials as attacks on its sovereignty and violations of the “One China” policy enshrined in the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, as well as a number of official statements. The Taiwan Strait, which separates the self-governed island from mainland China, has been a source of military tension since 1949, when Chinese nationalists fled to the island after losing the civil war to communist forces.
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