US officials meeting with Tsai sends aggressive signals: analysts

By Agencies — Global Times Source:Global Times Published: 2017/1/9 22:13:39

Taiwan leader meets Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas governor in Houston stopover

China said Monday it "firmly opposed" a meetings between Taiwan island's leader Tsai Ing-wen and US Republicans.

Tsai met Cruz in Houston en route to Central America over the weekend, the Republican from Texas said in a statement, with the two discussing arms sales, exchanges and economic relations, AFP reported.

During her stopover in Houston, Tsai also met Texas Goveror Greg Abbott.

We are firmly opposed to the Tsai's engagement with US officials under the pretext of transit, and her attempt to undermine China-US relations, foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a regular briefing.

He also urged the US to abide by the one-China policy and "prudently handle" Taiwan-related issues.

Tsai was transiting in Houston last weekend and is slated to return to Taipei after a stopover in San Francisco next weekend, said AFP.

The officials Tsai met during her stopover are not heavyweights in the US political arena but the timing, right before Trump's inauguration, sends strong signals, said Ni Feng, deputy director of the Institute of American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Observers said that San Francisco is more important than Houston and Tsai's team will certainly try to meet some officials during her stopover in San Francisco, though it is unclear who they are trying to reach.

Though US president-elect Donald Trump and his team said they will not meet with Tsai during her stopover in the US, observers said they prefer to see his actions.

Tsai is hell-bent on getting closer to the US, but military threatening is not an ideal solution for the mainland, Zhang Wensheng, a research fellow at the Taiwan Research Institute of Xiamen University, told the Global Times.

Zhang suggest that the mainland should make the Taiwanese feel the pain economically. Ni added that the Taiwan question has become more important and sensitive after Trump and Tsai talked over phone.

Top political advisor Yu Zhengsheng on Monday urged Taiwan's social organizations to oppose "Taiwan independence" and help integrate the two sides across the Taiwan Straits.

Yu, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, made the remarks when meeting with delegates to a forum attended by social organizations of Taiwan compatriots.

Yu said cross-Straits ties are facing a serious challenge as the Taiwan authority refuses to recognize the 1992 Consensus. He urged social organizations of Taiwan to safeguard the 1992 Consensus, the political foundation for peaceful cross-Straits development, and resolutely oppose "Taiwan independence" in any form.

Agencies — Global Times

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