Updated: Apr 10
Taiwan launches amphibious transport dock to meet defense needs in South China Sea.
Beijing’s Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council says China is ‘determined to stop Taiwan independence … we are doing it with action’.
Beijing warned on Tuesday it was determined to stop Taiwan getting close to Washing-ton with the use of military action, ahead of a visit by a former US politician and officials to the island at US President Joe Biden’s request.
Ma Xiaoguang, a spokesman for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, said the recent deployment of the largest fleet of warplanes to Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) was to tell Taiwan that moving closer to the US to seek independence would fail.
“The signal given by the military drills is that we are determined to stop Taiwan indepen-dence, and stop Taiwan from working with the US. We are doing it with action,” Ma told reporters on Tuesday.
“We do not promise to abandon the use of force, and retain the option of taking all nec-essary measures. We are aimed at the interference of [US] external forces and the very small number of separatists and their separatist activities. We are definitely not aimed at compatriots in Taiwan”.
Taiwan launches amphibious transport dock to meet defense needs
Ma’s warning came as former US senator Chris Dodd and former deputy secretaries of state Richard Armitage and James Steinberg headed to Taiwan on Tuesday at Biden’s request.
The White House said the exchange was a “personal signal” of Biden’s commitment to Taiwan and its democracy. They are expected to meet Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen on Thursday.
The State Department said on Friday it was issuing new guidelines to enable US officials to meet more freely with officials from Taiwan, a move that deepens relations with Taipei amid intensified Chinese military activity around the island, which China claims as its own.
Ma said the US should respect the one-China principle and properly handle the Taiwan issue.
“The external forces using Taiwan to control China and those independence camps using force to seek independence, are doomed to fail in the face of the 1.4 billion Chinese people’s strong determination,” he said.
Beijing sent 25 warplanes into Taiwan’s ADIZ on Monday, including 14 J-16 fighter jets, four J-10 fighter jets, four H-6K bombers, two Y-8 anti-submarine warfare planes and one KJ-500 airborne early warning and control aircraft.
It was the biggest ever incursion by People’s Liberation Army warplanes into Taiwan’s ADIZ.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has warned Beijing against invading Taiwan. But Ma said the drill was necessary to safeguard national sovereignty.
“The current complex and severe situation across the Taiwan Strait is mainly because the Democratic Progressive Party is colluding with separatist and external forces to seek independence provocations,” he said.