China has warned the United States against passing a bill that would extend Washington’s bilateral ties with Taiwan, which China sees as part of its territory.
The US and Taiwan have no diplomatic ties; but, the US is a major arms exporter to the self-ruled island nation.
A bill for broadening US-Taiwan ties passed the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations this week and will now move to the Senate.
“If it is passed and put into effect, it will cause serious disturbances to Sino-US relations,” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang warned on Friday, adding that the proposed bill posed a serious threat to peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.
“China is extremely dissatisfied and resolutely opposed to this and has already filed stern representations with the US side,” he said at a daily news briefing in Beijing.
China and Taiwan split amid a civil war in 1949; however, Beijing’s leadership pursues their reunification, saying the two will eventually be one.
In 1979, the US adopted the “One China” policy of recognizing Chinese sovereignty over Taiwan.
“The ‘One China’ principle is the political basis of Sino-US relations,” Geng said.
The US has maintained military ties with Taiwan, forwarding advanced military hardware to the self-ruled island.
Since the election last year of President Tsai Ing-wen, whose Democratic Progressive Party advocates anti-Beijing policy, Washington moved to broaden relations with Taiwan.
Taiwanese presidents and other senior officials often make stopovers in the US on their way to the island’s diminishing number of allies in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Taiwan currently maintains diplomatic ties with only 20 countries across the globe.