FM refutes US 'coercion' accusation over Taiwan, asks 'have Chinese warships gone to Gulf of Mexico to flaunt?'
Published: Apr 08, 2021 08:20 PM
Zhao Lijian

Zhao Lijian

The Chinese Foreign Ministry on Thursday urged the US to refrain from the wrong and dangerous practice and not send the wrong signals to the "Taiwan secessionists," after the US State Department on Wednesday voiced concern about China's "coercion" in the Taiwan Straits.

Zhao Lijian, the spokesperson of the ministry, said on Thursday that the US warship has been "flexing its muscles" in the Taiwan Straits on many occasions recently, stirring up trouble, sending a wrong signal to Taiwan secessionists and threatening the peace and stability across the Straits.

"I would like to ask, have Chinese warships gone to the Gulf of Mexico to flaunt?" Zhao asked. "Who is actually intimidating and practicing coercion around the world?"

"There is only one China in the world and Taiwan is an inalienable part of the Chinese territory. This is a basic fact recognized by the international community," Zhao said. 

He stressed that the one-China principle is the political foundation of China-US relations, and it is also a commitment made by the US to China in the three China-US joint communiqués.  

"It is a red line that cannot be crossed," Zhao warned. 

Targeting China, US State Department spokesperson Ned Price on Wednesday said that the US "maintains the capacity to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion that would jeopardize the security or the social or economic system of the people on Taiwan," media reported. 

On the same day, the US guided-missile destroyer USS John McCain transited the Taiwan Straits, days after the Chinese Navy announced a carrier group was staging regular exercises near the island, media reported. 

Zhao noted that US has been at war for all but 16 of its nearly 250-year history. With more than 800 overseas military bases around the world, the US ranks first in military expenditure in the world for years on end, accounting for about 40 percent of the total global military expenditure. 

"Media said that in the three decades since the Cold War, the US has reportedly been involved in 228 wars and military interventions, an average of 7.6 a year," Zhao said. 

"Senior US officials had said the US had made mistakes but faced up to challenges rather than avoiding them. In that case, the first thing the US should do is to apologize to the Iraqi and Syrian people and assume relevant responsibilities… My question is, without that, what makes the US say it will face up to the challenge instead of avoiding it?" Zhao said. 

 Zhao stressed that China does not and never intimidates anyone, but it is not afraid of anyone's intimidation and coercion.

China has the firm will and sufficient capability to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity. The US should be fully aware of the highly sensitive nature of the Taiwan question, abide by the one-China principle, and refrain from taking wrong and dangerous actions and playing with fire, so as to avoid serious damage to its own interests and peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits, according to Zhao. 

Global Times