China threatens America: We will not hesitate to start war against Taiwan if it makes independence
In a clear threatening tone, China asserted that it would "not hesitate" to start a war against Taiwan, in case the latter proceeded to gain independence from China.
This came within statements made by Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fengyi during a meeting with his US counterpart Lloyd Austin in Singapore.
Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Wu Qian said, "Minister Wei Fengyi warned Austin during their meeting that the Chinese army would not hesitate to start a war against Taiwan, whatever the price of that step, if anyone dared to separate Taiwan from China," according to the website, "M SN" American.
The Chinese minister described any attempt at independence for Taiwan - the self-governing island - as a "conspiracy".
And he added, addressing Austin: "The island of Taiwan is a Chinese island, and the one-China principle is the political basis for Sino-US relations."
He pointed out that Beijing "condemns the recent US arms sales to the island," referring to the conclusion of a $120 million arms deal between Washington and Taipei earlier this week.
For its part, the Chinese Ministry of Defense stressed in statements transmitted by "MSN" that Beijing "will destroy any conspiracy for Taiwan independence," and that it will "resolutely defend the reunification of the motherland."
In turn, the US Department of Defense quoted Austin as stressing the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, and his opposition to unilateral changes to the status quo, according to the same source.
During the meeting, Austin called on China to refrain from further destabilizing actions towards Taiwan, according to the same source.
"I met Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fengyi on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue," Austin wrote in a tweet on Twitter after an hour-long meeting.
"We discussed defense relations between the two countries, as well as global and regional security issues," the US secretary added.
Today, the first direct meeting between the Chinese Defense Minister and his American counterpart was held on the sidelines of a prominent security summit that will resume in Singapore after a two-year hiatus due to the Corona pandemic.
In this year's edition of the Shangri-La Dialogue, senior defense officials from 42 countries are expected to discuss a range of regional and international issues from Friday to Sunday.
Austin is scheduled to deliver a speech on Saturday, while the Chinese Defense Minister will deliver his speech on Sunday.
On Russia's war against Ukraine, Wei told the US Defense Secretary that his country "always adheres to the principle of objectivity and fairness on the Ukraine issue and actively makes efforts to promote peace and talks."
"If anyone wants to use the Ukraine issue to harm our country's interests, we will definitely take resolute countermeasures," Wei added.
On February 24, Russia launched an attack on Ukraine, followed by international rejection and severe economic sanctions against Moscow, which stipulate to end its operation that Kyiv abandon plans to join military entities and remain neutral, which the latter considers an "interference in its sovereignty."
Taiwan is a central issue for Beijing, which rejects any attempts by independence supporters to separate the island from China, and stresses that it will not fail to protect its regional security and sovereignty.
In 1945, China became a founding member of the United Nations and one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, but its loss in the civil war (nationalist forces) in 1949 prompted members of the government to flee to Taiwan and form a government there, while the Communists in China, led by Mao Zedong, established the Republic of China popular.
Beijing adopts the principle of "one China" and asserts that the People's Republic of China is the only party authorized to represent China in international forums, and threatens from time to time to use force and intervene militarily if Taiwan declares independence.
Only 22 countries recognize Taiwan's independence.
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