China warns US against planned arms sales to Taiwan
Iran Press TV
Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:46AM
China has strongly objected to the United States for approving proposed arms sales to Taiwan, warning that providing the self-ruled island with arms would breach Chinese sovereignty and do "severe damage" to bilateral relations with Washington.
The State Department approved the proposed sale to Taiwan of spare parts for military aircraft worth up to 330 million dollars.
The US Congress has 30 days to raise unlikely objections to the sale.
The deal, which covers parts for Taiwan's F-16, C-130, F-5, Indigenous Defense Fighters, and other aircraft systems, was announced by US defense officials on Monday.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang reacted to the contract on Tuesday, saying Beijing had already lodged "stern representations" with Washington.
He said the Chinese government strongly opposed the planned arms sales, urging Washington to cancel the contract.
China has constantly warned the US over its relations with Taiwan.
Beijing claims sovereignty over self-ruled Taiwan; and almost all world countries recognize that sovereignty under a policy known as "One China."
The US, too, recognizes Chinese sovereignty over Taiwan, but it has long courted Taipei in an attempt to counter China.
Earlier this year, President Donald Trump signed an act that encourages high-level visits between the US and Taiwan, despite Beijing's strong opposition. His administration approved $1.4 billion in arms sales to Taiwan last year and is now opening a new de facto embassy in a suburb of Taipei.
The new arms sales, the US claimed, will contribute to American national security by boosting Taiwan's defensive capability.
Taiwan "continues to be an important force for political stability, military balance and economic progress in the region," the Pentagon's Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a statement.
A spokesperson for the presidential office in Taipei also said that Washington's support would boost confidence among Taiwanese in the face of "severe" security challenges.
The US is already involved in separate trade and military disputes with China.
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