Chinese Defense Ministry Slams U.S. Arms Sale to Taiwan

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China is strongly dissatisfied with and firmly opposes the United States’ arms sale to China’s Taiwan region, a defense ministry spokesperson said on Friday.

Zhang Xiaogang, spokesperson for the Ministry of National Defense, made the remarks in response to a media query on the U.S. Department of State’s approval of selling infrared search and track systems for F-16 fighter jets worth around 500 million U.S. dollars to Taiwan.

The arms sale has grossly interfered in China’s internal affairs and severely violated the one-China principle and the three China-U.S. joint communiques, especially the August 17 Communique, the spokesperson said.

The move has posed a threat to the well-being and safety of Taiwan compatriots and the peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, Zhang said, noting that China has lodged solemn representations with the United States.

The Taiwan question is at the very core of China’s core interests, the bedrock of the political foundation of China-U.S. relations, and the first red line that must not be crossed in China-U.S. relations, Zhang said.

China urges the United States to honor its commitment to not supporting “Taiwan independence,” immediately cease providing Taiwan with arms, and cease elevating military contact with Taiwan, Zhang said.

He said that any attempt to use Taiwan to contain China is doomed to fail, and seeking “Taiwan independence” by military means will lead nowhere.

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army will always remain on high alert to resolutely safeguard China’s national sovereignty and territorial integrity and firmly maintain peace and stability across the Strait, Zhang said