Beijing hits back at Biden's claims
Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin answers a question at a regular news conference in Beijing, May 23, 2022. [Photo/fmprc.gov.cn]
Ministry: Abide by one-China principle, be prudent with words, actions on Taiwan
China has hit back at United States President Joe Biden's claims that Washington would militarily defend Taiwan, warning that no one should underestimate the nation's "firm resolve, staunch will and strong ability" to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Speaking at a regular news conference on Monday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that China expresses strong dissatisfaction with and firm opposition to Biden's remarks, stressing that Taiwan is an inalienable part of Chinese territory.
Wang's comment came after Biden, who was visiting Japan, said earlier on Monday in Tokyo that the US would intervene militarily to defend Taiwan, a statement that was seen as a violation by Washington of its commitment to the one-China principle and a fresh challenge to China's core interests.
The spokesman reiterated that the Taiwan question is purely China's internal affair and so allows no foreign interference.
"On issues that bear on China's sovereignty, territorial integrity and other core interests, no one shall expect China to make any compromise or trade-offs," said Wang, warning the US not to stand on the opposite side of the 1.4 billion Chinese people.
He also urged the US to earnestly abide by the one-China principle and stipulations in the three China-US joint communiques, honor its commitment to not supporting "Taiwan independence" and be prudent with its words and actions on the Taiwan question.
The US should avoid sending wrong signals to "Taiwan independence" separatist forces, lest it should seriously damage China-US relations and peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits, Wang said.
"The Chinese side will take firm actions to safeguard its sovereignty and security interests. We live up to our words," he added.
Shortly after Biden's remarks, a White House official clarified that the US policy toward Taiwan remains unchanged, Reuters reported. The official said that Biden reiterated that the US pursues the one-China policy and stays committed to peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits.
Meanwhile, the 75th World Health Assembly unequivocally refused on Monday to put on the conference's agenda the proposal of a handful of countries inviting Taiwan to participate as an observer. The World Health Assembly is the decision-making body of the World Health Organization.
It has been proved that the one-China principle is a broad consensus of the international community and also an overriding trend that brooks no challenge, said Zhu Fenglian, a spokeswoman for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, on Monday.
The Taiwan question has been the most sensitive in China-US relations. However, Washington has constantly played the "Taiwan card" in recent years to contain China's development by developing official exchanges with Taiwan and selling more advanced arms to the island.
In 2018, then US president Donald Trump signed the Taiwan Travel Act, encouraging visits between the US and Taiwan at all levels. One of Washington's provocative moves against China was the visit by a delegation of US Congress members to Taiwan in April. There had been reports that Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the US House of Representatives, might visit Taiwan during her Asian trip, but the trip was postponed after she became infected with COVID-19.
Recently, wording about not supporting "Taiwan independence" and acknowledging Beijing's position that Taiwan is part of China was removed from the section of the US State Department website regarding Taiwan.
The Foreign Ministry has warned Washington to stop hollowing out the one-China principle and stop condoning or abetting "Taiwan independence" moves, and urged it to honor its political commitments to China.
Observers said that Washington's irresponsible words and deeds run counter to a series of consensuses reached between the heads of state of the two countries, and that if the US persists in playing the "Taiwan card" and goes further down the wrong path, it will lead to a very perilous situation.
Xu Liping, a researcher at the National Institute of International Strategy of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that at a time when the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has yet to be resolved, the US is constantly fanning the flames and attempting to damage cross-Straits relations, which is detrimental to regional and global peace, stability and development.
As the world's largest economy, the US should take the responsibility of promoting world peace, but what it is doing is only hampering regional and global development, Xu said, adding that this shows the hypocrisy of the US government.