Chinese military force against Taiwan will see response: US officials

Washington, April 6 (CNA) Any military action taken by China against Taiwan will be met with a response from the United States and the international community, as was the case with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and The United States hopes the People’s Republic of China (PRC) learns the “right lessons” from the current situation in Ukraine, U.S. officials said on Wednesday.

In talks between Washington and Beijing since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, including one between US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平), “we want to make sure the PRC gets the right lessons,” said the US Assistant Secretary. of State Wendy Sherman said during a hearing in the House of Representatives on Wednesday.

Sherman was questioned by Virginia Rep. Gerry Connolly on whether the administration issued ‘warnings’ to China amid fears Beijing could imitate Russia and attack Taiwan, during a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Committee on the Biden administration’s strategy to restore American leadership in the Indo-Pacific region.

The United States believes stability across the Taiwan Strait is “critical,” Sherman said. “We do not see in our one-China policy that taking Taiwan by force from the mainland is acceptable, and certainly does not lead to stability along the Taiwan Strait or stability in the Indo-Pacific. .”

If China chose to use force against Taiwan, “any such action would see a response from the international community, not just the United States,” Sherman said, citing the two UN resolutions in March in favor of Ukraine and the need for Russian President Vladimir Putin to bear the consequences of his “premeditated, unprovoked and unjust invasion”.

Taiwan was among the issues discussed at the hearing, with several House officials expressing concern over delays in delivering key weapons systems to Taiwan, including 250 Stinger surface-to-air missiles under an approved deal. by the United States in 2019, among others.

Texas Congressman Michael McCaul said he had breakfast with Taiwan’s Representative to the United States Hsiao Bi-kihm (蕭美琴) on Wednesday morning and “his biggest complaint against us is that , although we have notified and approved these systems. They have not yet been delivered to Taiwan.”

McCaul asked Sherman to clarify the cause of the delay.

McCaul, Ohio Representative Steven Chabot and Kentucky Representative Andy Barr respectively said in their remarks that the war in Ukraine has shown how critical it is to besiege US allies with the weapons they need before an invasion, not after, to deter possible attacks.

In her response, Sherman said she understands Taiwan wants everything delivered as quickly as possible, adding that the State Department and the Department of Defense are looking at the entire commercial defense enterprise to see where efficiencies can be achieved and getting these items to Taiwan. faster. “We’ve talked today about making sure those timelines accelerate.”

Separately, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Wednesday that there has been close coordination between the agencies to ensure that “we will be able to respond appropriately” to deter military action by China against Taiwan.

The administration and the Treasury Department are opposed to any unilateral change to the status quo regarding Taiwan, Yellen said in response to North Carolina Rep. Patrick McHenry.

“We are working closely with our partners in the administration to ensure that we have tools at our disposal to respond to provocations in this regard,” she said.

Pressed by McHenry to talk about the administration’s strategy in the event of a Chinese attack on Taiwan, Yellen declined to comment on specifics.

Yellen said the United States had imposed sanctions on China for forced labor in Xinjiang and provocations with Hong Kong and noted that sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine had inflicted significant consequences. “I think you should have no doubts about our ability and be resolved to do the same in other situations.”

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