China slams US and UK
Beijing has condemned statements from London and Washington about arming Taiwan, pointing out that such talk fuels separatism on the disputed island and goes contrary to their recognition of China. UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken have both come out in support of sending weapons to Taiwan this week.
“We deplore and reject Secretary Blinken’s statement at a congressional hearing on April 26 that the administration is determined to make sure that Taiwan has all necessary means to defend itself against any potential aggression,” Xie Yongjun, head of the information department at the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, tweeted on Thursday in reference to multiple outlets having noticed Blinken’s statement.
Xie was echoing the words of MFA spokesman Wang Wenbin from the news briefing on Wednesday. Wang told reporters that US statements clash with their recognition of Beijing and the One China policy, and encourage Taiwanese separatists by selling weapons to the island.
“The US admits that Taiwan is part of China, but keeps talking about the mainland’s potential ‘aggression’ of Taiwan. Isn’t this self-contradictory since a country can not ‘invade’ part of its own territory?” said Wang.
“We have this stern warning for the US side: The historical trend of China’s reunification cannot be held back, and the one-China principle is what underpins peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” Wang added, warning Washington to “not underestimate the strong resolve, determination and capability of the 1.4 billion Chinese people in defending national sovereignty and territorial integrity” or risk bringing “unbearable cost to the US itself.”
During Thursday’s briefing, Wang also addressed the speech by the British foreign secretary, in which Truss argued for “a global NATO” to engage in the “Indo-Pacific” and arm Taiwan the way the UK and its allies are now arming Ukraine.
“NATO claims to be a defensive organization, but in fact it is constantly creating confrontation and disturbances,” Wang told reporters. “NATO demands that other countries abide by the basic norms of international relations, yet has wantonly waged wars and dropped bombs in sovereign states, killing and displacing innocent civilians.”
“The impact of NATO’s eastward expansion on the long-term peace and stability of Europe is worth reflecting upon. NATO has messed up Europe. Is it now trying to mess up the Asia-Pacific and even the world?” Wang added.
Truss’s fiery speech also drew the attention of Global Times, China's English-language state daily, which on Thursday featured an editorial describing London as increasingly willing to serve as a “pebble” in Washington’s global hegemony.
Having left the EU and enjoying a special relationship with the US, the UK often says and does things “that are inconvenient for Washington and at times being even more aggressive,” the outlet noted. “Some politicians in London now increasingly see this as a source of uniqueness and superiority. The more they do this, the more they seem to feel the lingering warmth of the UK’s prior status as ‘The Empire on which the sun never set’.”
The US and UK actions amount to “a series of small-circle activities … in the name of the so-called common values and the culture that prioritizes Anglo Saxons,” said the editorial, adding that the world is increasingly recognizing this. “Truss and her ilk attempt to bring NATO to Asia and try to destabilize the Pacific, but they are doomed to fail. Treating China as a ‘systemic competitor’ is also definitely a big misjudgment in the ‘Global Britain’ strategy.”