China Warns Taiwan’s Decision To Confirm Presence of US Troops Could ‘Trigger War’
By Brianna McKee |
China’s propaganda mouthpiece the Global times says Taiwan’s decision to confirm US troops are stationed on the island has “crossed the bottom line” and could “trigger war”.
The Global Times has slammed Taiwan’s leader Tsai Ing-wen, claiming she was “inviting trouble” by confirming the presence of United States military trainers on the island nation.
During an interview with CNN on Thursday, Ms Tsai said the threat presented by Beijing was increasing “every day” and admitted for the first time American troops were training Taiwan’s military.
Chinese fighter jets made unprecedented incursions into Taiwanese airspace over the last month amid escalating tensions between Taipei and Beijing.
In the first five days of October alone Taiwan reported 150 incursions from Chinese fighter jets, nuclear-capable bombers and other military aircraft.
Responding to Ms Tsai’s admission, The Global Times warned Taiwan China will not “indulge” any behaviour which could “harm the country’s sovereignty”
“History will not forgive them. The Chinese mainland has the ability to execute the history’s just judgment on them,” the Chinese publication stated.
“Regardless of the purpose, the fact that US troops are stationed in Taiwan has crossed the bottom line. It is one of the most dangerous factors that could trigger a war in the Taiwan Straits.”
Turning to the possibility of war, the Global Times said Taiwan’s attempts to seek out “support and protection” from external allies like the US could force China’s hand.
“As the secessionist forces on the island seek support and protection, at the same time, they are also pushing the mainland to decide to resolve the Taiwan question by force,” the article continued.
“They know very well that they are quenching their thirst with poison. They are hysterically drinking poison.
“We hold the initiative in deciding when to punish the Taiwan secessionist forces. We know how to solve the Taiwan question.”
The Global Times said secessionist forces in Taiwan would be on the “losing side” given China’s superior military advantages.
It comes after Beijing’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Zhao Lijian accused the US of “violating” the one-China principle by issuing a statement backing Taiwan’s involvement with the UN.
“The US statement seriously violates the one-China principle and the stipulations of the three China-US joint communiqués,” Mr Zhao said during his Wednesday press conference.
“[It] violates the promise it has made, violates the basic norms governing international relations, and has sent seriously wrong signals to the ‘Taiwan independence’ forces.
“There is only one China in the world. The government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China.
“The Taiwan region is an inalienable part of the Chinese territory.
“If the US still back-pedals in history today, it is pitting itself against the 1.4 billion Chinese people and the vast majority of countries in the world, and will only face another failure.”
This stark warning which was directed at US and separatist forces in Taiwan came before Ms Tsai’s interview with CNN, in which she described Taiwan as a “beacon” of democracy.
“Here is this island of 23 million people trying hard every day to protect ourselves and protect our democracy and making sure that our people have the kind of freedom they deserve,” she said.
“If we fail, then that means people that believe in these values would doubt whether these are values that they (should) be fighting for.”
Ms Tsai refused to confirm how many US personnel were on the island but said it was “not as many as people thought”.
Taiwan and mainland China have been separately governed since the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949 where the Nationalists retreated to Taiwan.