The White House called the Chinese ambassador to Washington to condemn Beijing’s “irresponsible” behavior on Taiwan, A US official reported this Friday.
John Kirby, a spokesman for the National Security Council, said Ambassador Qin Gang was summoned by the rattling of China’s military sabers in response to a visit by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the self-governing island. Taiwan, which China considers a province.
(Also read: China suspends several cooperations with the US and sanctions Pelosi)
Kirby, who called China’s actions “provocative,” did not specify who met with the ambassador.
China announced on Friday that it was suspending its cooperation with the United States in several key areas, such as climate change and defense. In addition, since Thursday, it has carried out enormous military maneuvers around Taiwan, the largest to date.
“We condemn the military actions of the PRC, which are irresponsible, contrary to our long-standing goal of maintaining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait,” Kirby said.
(You may be interested in: Taiwan: ‘porcupine strategy’, to defend itself against a possible Chinese invasion)
“We made it clear to the ambassador that Beijing’s actions are a matter of concern for Taiwan, for us and for our partners around the world,” he added, highlighting the concern of the G7, the group that brings together the largest Western economies, and of the Asian regional grouping ASEAN.
“Finally, we make it clear once again, as we have done privately at the highest level and publicly: nothing has changed in our One China policy,” Kirby said.
He was referring to the US position of only acknowledging the Chinese position that Taiwan is part of China. This position leaves it up to the two sides to find a solution, but opposes any use of force to change the status quo.
(Also: China initiates intimidation tactics against Taiwan and warns of escalation)
Beijing’s actions are a matter of concern for Taiwan, for us and for our partners around the world
Beijing insists that Taiwan is part of China and wants reunification, if necessary by force. Taiwan’s current ruling party has vowed to uphold the island’s sovereignty.
“We also make it clear that the United States is prepared for whatever Beijing chooses to do. We will not seek or want a crisis,” he said.
But “at the same time, we will not be deterred from operating in the seas and skies of the Western Pacific, in accordance with international law, as we have done for decades, supporting Taiwan and defending a free and open Pacific region.”
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