UPDATE - Beijing Urges US Not To Send False Signals To Supporters Of Taiwan's Independence

UPDATE - Beijing Urges US Not to Send False Signals to Supporters of Taiwan's Independence

BEIJING (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 14th April, 2021) China calls on the United States to respect its commitments on Taiwan and not to send false signals to supporters of its independence by dispatching an unofficial delegation to the island, Ma Xiaoguang, a spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the Chinese State Council, said on Wednesday.

Earlier in the day, the CNN broadcaster reported, citing a senior official from the US administration, that US President Joe Biden had sent an unofficial delegation to Taiwan on Tuesday in a move to show Washington's support for the island in light of China stepping up its military presence around the island. The delegation, including former Senator Chris Dodd, as well as former senior state department officials Richard Armitage and James Steinberg, is set to meet with senior Taiwanese officials at Biden's request.

"The US, first of all, should understand what is right and what is wrong. The situation in the Taiwan Strait is currently very difficult, the reason and all responsibility for this lie with the Democratic Progressive Party [of Taiwan]. Secondly, we oppose any official contacts between Taiwan and the United States. The US has a commitment to China regarding the Taiwan issue. We hope it will take its commitments seriously and stop sending false signals to the pro-Taiwan independence forces," Ma said at a briefing.

On Monday, Deputy Foreign Minister of Taiwan Tien Chung-kwang announced that the island was preparing for a possible visit of former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo later this year. The move to welcome Pompeo, known for his strong support for the island during his office as the US state secretary, is likely to anger Beijing.

Commenting on China's recent military drills near the Taiwan Strait, the official called them a message to the forces advocating for the island's independence.

"The message we want to send out by means of the Chinese People's Liberation Army military exercise is that our determination to suppress 'Taiwan's independence' and deter the Taiwan-US collusion it is not just empty words," Ma said.

The official also said that the current tensions in the Taiwan Strait are the result of the collusion of ruling Taiwanese Democratic Progressive Party, as well as separatists, with external forces.

"The military drills of the People's Liberation Army near the Taiwan Strait is a necessary measure to ensure state sovereignty in light of the current security situation in the Taiwan Strait area, this is a direct response to external forces interfering in Taiwan's affairs and those who provoke 'Taiwan's independence,'" the official added, noting once again that Taiwan is China's internal affair.

Though the United States, along with many other countries, does not recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation and officially sticks to the "One China" policy, Washington has kept informal relations with the island after severing diplomatic ties with it in 1979.

Beijing, in turn, has repeatedly called Taiwan a sensitive issue in its relations with Washington, as China considers the island to be part of its territory. China is especially uneasy over Taiwan's cooperation with the US in defense.