US urged to turn its non-support for 'Taiwan independence' commitment into action
Published: Dec 27, 2023 10:53 PM
Chen Binhua, a spokesperson for the State Council's Taiwan Affairs Office Photo:VCG

Chen Binhua, a spokesperson for the State Council's Taiwan Affairs Office Photo:VCG

The Taiwan Affairs Office under the State Council on Wednesday urged the US to stop arming the island of Taiwan, stop interfering in Taiwan's regional elections, and turn its commitment of non-support for "Taiwan independence" into concrete action.

The final press conference of the Taiwan Affairs Office in 2023 came against the backdrop of the US' constant military support to the secessionist Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) authorities despite US President Joe Biden's claim that the US does not support "Taiwan independence." 

On December 15, the Pentagon said that it had approved a $300 million sale of military equipment "to help maintain Taiwan's tactical information systems," according to a Reuters report. The US National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024, which was signed into effect on December 22, also vowed more resources to arm the island.

Chen Binhua, spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office, said at a press briefing Wednesday that the US' insistence on including Taiwan-related content in the NDAA 2024 is a gross interference in China's internal affairs, representing a serious violation of the one-China principle and the three China-US Joint Communiqués, sending a seriously wrong signal to Taiwan secessionists, and undermining peace and stability in the Taiwan Straits.

We express our strong dissatisfaction and resolute opposition to this, Chen said. "Some people in the US said that they hope for peace and stability in the Taiwan Straits, but in reality, they are speeding up arming Taiwan and inciting confrontation across the Straits," he said.

We urge the US to abide by its solemn political commitment to China on the Taiwan question, to turn its commitment of non-support for Taiwan independence into concrete action, and to immediately stop arming Taiwan, and stop interfering in Taiwan's regional elections, Chen said.

According to Xin Qiang, deputy director of the Center for American Studies at Fudan University, arming Taiwan is actually a gesture of emboldening and encouraging the DPP authorities and its candidate Lai Ching-te, which is a kind of interference and intervention in the island's upcoming election as competition becomes increasingly intense.

The US will not change its strategic path to contain China with playing the Taiwan card, nor does it want to see a rapid warming of cross-Straits relations, Xin said.

According to the latest election polls released by four agencies in Taiwan on Tuesday, the DPP is leading the race, although some polls show that the candidate from the opposition Chinese Kuomintang (KMT) is narrowing the gap. 

On December 24, a number of young people took to the streets of Taipei calling for peaceful cross-Straits exchanges and protested against the DPP authorities' policy of extending compulsory military service from four months to one year, which will be implemented on New Year's Day 2024, according to Xinhua. 

The DPP authorities claim that "war is not an option for Taiwan," but they have stepped up their "reliance on the US for independence," even at the expense of the lives and well-being of the Taiwan people, pandering to US idea of turning Taiwan into a "powder keg" and a "mine island," Chen remarked. 

"We warn the DPP authorities that 'Taiwan independence' means war," Chen said, noting that no matter how many weapons the DPP authorities obtain from the US, "they will not be able to shake our firm will to resolve the Taiwan question and complete national reunification, nor will they be able to withstand our strong ability to crush attempts of 'Taiwan independence' and safeguard national sovereignty."

The US cannot afford a conflict in the Taiwan Straits right now either, as it has already been sucked into the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the Israel-Palestine conflict, Xin said. "If the DPP, emboldened by the US' military support, triggers a cross-Straits conflict during its advance toward secession and it drags the US in, the cost and damage for Washington would be unbearable." 

With the 2024 presidential election looming on the horizon, Xin said the US needs China's cooperation on climate change, stabilizing the economy, curbing inflation, and drugs control, including fentanyl problems, under a detente atmosphere. If the above are not handled well, or even worse, the two states are drawn into a confrontation because of the Taiwan question, it could affect Biden's reelection prospects, Xin said.