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27 May, 2024 10:56

Taiwan to get better weapons than Ukraine – Washington

Taipei will have the newest American military technology, GOP Representative Michael McCaul has said
Taiwan to get better weapons than Ukraine – Washington

Taiwan will be supplied with more up-to-date US weapons than Ukraine and has access to advanced American technology, Michael McCaul, the chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee has claimed.

McCaul announced the imminent arrival of American weapons while on a controversial visit to the self-administered Chinese island on Monday. Beijing has repeatedly warned the US of 'consequences' from its courting and arming of the island. Taiwan has previously complained that Washington’s military assistance to Kiev had caused in arms deliveries to the island. 

”We are moving forward on those weapons systems. I’d like to see it faster, but they are forthcoming,” McCaul said, during a press conference following his meeting with President Lai Ching-te, whose inauguration took place last week.

The US has issues with military manufacturing capacity, the Texas lawmaker acknowledged. Some of the arms that Taiwan is yet to receive were ordered in 2020, and the delay is “way too long”. McCaul added: “I put continuous pressure on the defense contractors and the administration … to get these defense articles out as quickly as possible.”

“Taiwan, unlike Ukraine, will be getting new weapon systems, not old ones – especially old Russian weapons. It would be a new stock that would be supplied to Taiwan. Some of our latest technologies,” the Republican congressman added.

In addition to sending US-produced weapons, Washington has worked to procure old Soviet stockpiles in third countries in order to donate these to Kiev.

McCaul noted that Taiwan’s hypothetical conflict with China would be a naval one, unlike Ukraine’s hostilities with Russia, which are primarily conducted on land. He denounced Beijing for sending an “armada of ships and planes surrounding this island,” intended to “intimidate” Taipei.

Beijing seeks peaceful reunification with the island, which served as the last refuge for nationalist forces during the Chinese civil war of the 1940s. However, it has warned that it would resort to force, if Taiwan tries to formally declare independence. Some political forces in the US are pushing Taipei towards separatism, Chinese officials have claimed.

Earlier in the day, McCaul described Washington’s arms deliveries as means to protect “democracies” from “aggression and tyranny, whether it’s Putin in Russia, the Ayatollah in Iran, or Chairman Xi next door to us in China,” referring to Vladimir Putin, presumably, Ali Khamenei, and Xi Jinping, the leaders of the three nations that the US considers its strategic rivals.

Moscow has described the Ukraine conflict as a US-led proxy war on Russia, in which Ukrainian soldiers are used as “cannon fodder.”