China ought to stop its expansionist agenda of reuniting by force Taipei if the world is to enjoy peace.The US has showcased a firm stand against Beijing’s agenda in Taiwan and in the South China Sea where it has been building artificial islands in international waters.
Any unprovoked attack on Taiwan will result in a “resolute reaction” from Washington, US Congressman Rob Wittman said Friday during a visit to Taipei.
China claims self-ruled Taiwan as its territory to be taken one day, by force if necessary, and it has skyrocketed pressure in the region in the recent past with near-daily air incursions and frequent military drills around the island.
Wittman, a Republican, is vice chair of the House Armed Services Committee, which oversees funding for the US military and is leading a delegation on a three-day visit to Taiwan.
“President Tsai (Ing-wen), know that any, any hostile, unprovoked attack on Taiwan will result in a resolute reaction from the United States,” he said during a speech Friday.
Wittman said peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region is built on “a foundation of strength.”
“We know strength is the best deterrence to anyone that may think there is an opportunity to act badly in this region.”
This comes just a day after President Joe Biden authorized the sale of weapons to Taipei something Beijing has vehemently opposed in the recent past.
The State Department informed Congress on Tuesday of the $80 million package, which is small compared with recent sales to Taiwan but marks the first assistance to Taipei under the Foreign Military Financing program, which generally involves grants or loans to sovereign countries.
For five decades, the United States has officially recognized only Beijing although Congress, under the Taiwan Relations Act, requires the supply of weapons to the self-governing democracy for its defense.
Successive US administrations have done so through sales rather than direct aid to Taiwan, with formal statements speaking in the tone of business transactions with the island’s de-facto embassy in Washington.
The State Department insisted that the first-ever aid under the program did not imply any recognition of Taiwan’s sovereignty.
Australia, Japan, and the U.S. have activated their Naval assets in the South China Sea this week, gathering off the western Philippines to highlight their commitment to the rule of international law in the region after a recent show of Chinese aggression in the disputed waters, Filipino security officials said Sunday.