Blinken Raises Concerns With China over Taiwan

Dorothy Li
By Dorothy Li
October 31, 2021US News
Blinken Raises Concerns With China over Taiwan
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi meet at a hotel in Rome on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Rome, Italy, on Oct. 31, 2021 . (Tiziana Fabi/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed concern about Beijing’s actions towards Taiwan during a face-to-face meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Oct. 31.

The bilateral meeting on the sidelines of a summit of Group of 20 leaders in Rome came as Beijing’s escalating military harassment towards the self-ruled island it claims as its own has triggered growing international alarm.

Blinken raised concerns that Beijing’s actions “undermine the international rules-based order and that run counter to our values and interests,” such as actions related to human rights and Taiwan, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement.

The secretary also said the two countries have areas of common interests, such as climate change, and “underscored the importance of maintaining open lines of communication to responsibly manage the competition” between Washington and Beijing, according to the brief statement.

In a longer readout from Beijing’s Foreign Ministry, Wang agreed on the need for engagement between the two countries, but blasted Blinken over a range of alleged U.S. “wrongdoings,” including the Taiwan issue.

Wang warned that Washington’s support of Taiwan could cause “subversive and damaging effects” to U.S.-China relations. The Chinese communist regime, which has frequently threatened to seize Taiwan with military force, claims that any international support for the island nation amounts to unacceptable interference in Beijing’s “internal affairs.”

While the United States does not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan, it maintains robust ties with the democratic island under a framework set out in the Taiwan Relations Act, which obliges Washington to provide Taipei with the means to defend itself.

The Chinese regime has stepped up its military pressure on Taiwan recently. At the beginning of October, Beijing sent nearly 150 military aircraft into Taiwan’s air defense zone over four days, in a record show of force that prompted the island’s defense minister to describe cross-strait tensions as the worst he’s seen in 40 years.

President Joe Biden later sparked controversy by saying that the United States had a “commitment” to defend Taiwan if the Chinese regime attacked, a departure from Washington’s long-held policy of “strategic ambiguity,” wherein it is deliberately vague on what it would do in such a scenario.

The White House, however, later clarified that Biden was not signaling a change in U.S. policy.

The Blinken-Wang talks occurred less than a month after White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan met with the regime’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi in Switzerland. During that meeting, the two sides agreed that Biden and Chinese leader Xi Jinping would hold a virtual meeting before the end of this year.

The two leaders haven’t met in person since Biden took office in January. Though they had been expected to meet in Rome this weekend, Xi ended up participating in the G-20 summit via video link, with Wang attending in person on behalf of Xi.

From The Epoch Times

ntd newsletter icon
Sign up for NTD Daily
What you need to know, summarized in one email.
Stay informed with accurate news you can trust.
By registering for the newsletter, you agree to the Privacy Policy.