– China ‘will not hesitate’ to launch war on Taiwan
Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fengke said on Friday that the military would launch a war if Taiwan gains independence.
During a meeting with his US envoy in Singapore on Friday, the Chinese Defense Minister warned that China would “not hesitate” to go to war if Taiwan declared its independence.
“If anyone dares to separate Taiwan from China, the Chinese military will not hesitate to start a war at any cost,” said Wu Qian, a spokesman for the Chinese Defense Ministry. Fengke did so during a meeting with US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.
According to the Chinese Ministry of Defense, Beijing – which considers the island an integral part of its territory – will “break into a thousand pieces” any attempt for independence.
According to the Pentagon, Lloyd Austin told Wei Fengke that Beijing should “avoid” further destabilizing activities in the region.
He reaffirmed the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait, opposes unilateral changes in the current situation and calls on China (China) to refrain from any unstable actions against Taiwan, according to the same source.
The two officials, who spoke by phone in April, met for the first time since 2019 on the sidelines of the “Shangri-La Conversation” security forum in Singapore, which lasted until Sunday after Lloyd Austin took office. , Due to infection.
China’s growing influence in the South China Sea and the Asia-Pacific region, the war in Ukraine, or the points of contention between Taiwan and Taiwan have multiplied in recent years.
China considers the island, which has a population of 24 million, to be one of its historic provinces, although it has not been controlled, increasing pressure against Taipei in recent years, for example Taiwan has launched infiltration campaigns in the air defense zone.
On May 30, according to Taipei, China carried out its second major incursion this year, with 30 planes entering the island’s air defense identification zone (Adis, abbreviated in English), including 20 poachers. . By January 23, 39 planes had landed in Addis.
U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken saw this as a sign of “increasingly provocative rhetoric and activism” from Beijing.
During a visit to Japan in May, President Joe Biden appeared to have broken decades of US policy, in response to a question, pointing out that Washington could militarily defend Taiwan during Beijing’s invasion.
The White House has insisted that the deliberately ambiguous notion of “strategic ambiguity” governing Washington’s Taiwan policy for decades remains unchanged.
Russian invasion of Ukraine
While Washington has accused Beijing of indirectly supporting Moscow, the two powers are at odds over the Russian invasion of Ukraine. China has called for talks to end the war but has not condemned Russia and has repeatedly criticized the US supply of arms to Ukraine.
During their telephone conversation in April, the Chinese Defense Minister asked the US Prime Minister not to slander, embarrass, threaten or pressure China.
At the same summit, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida declared that “Ukraine may be tomorrow’s East Asia”, pointing to the situation in Taiwan.
Source of tension
The South China Sea is another source of tension between Beijing and Washington. China claims ownership of almost the entire waterway through which trillions of dollars of trade pass each year. Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam also claim the territory.
Beijing ignores 2016 International Court of Justice ruling that its historic claims are unfounded.
During a meeting with Southeast Asian defense ministers, Lloyd Austin discussed US strategy to “maintain an open, inclusive and law-based regional security environment”, according to the Singapore government statement.
His comments are an indirect reference to China’s increasingly assertive stance on the region.