In a meeting with Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen on U.S. soil, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and 18 members of Congress showed their support for Taiwan. McCarthy has said that U.S. support is “unwavering.”
Air Force One was the backdrop for an afternoon news conference at former President Ronald Reagan’s presidential library in Simi Valley, California. Tsai said in carefully chosen words that Taiwan wants to be a reliable partner to the world, a pillar of stability in the region, and a force for good. In a morning meeting with congressional leaders, Tsai said she was reaffirming Taiwan’s commitment to defending the peaceful status quo to ensure the Taiwanese people’s continued prosperity.
McCarthy stated at a news conference that America’s support for the people of Taiwan would remain steadfast, unwavering, and bipartisan. In a subsequent statement, he vowed to work with Congress to expedite more military aid to Taipei. McCarthy tweeted that it is evident that multiple actions are required. He said that the U.S. must continue selling armaments to Taiwan and ensure they arrive on time. He added that the U.S. and Taiwan should strengthen their economic cooperation, especially in trade and technology.
In response to the high-level meeting, Beijing released a furious statement in which it accused the U.S. of working with Taiwan to promote Taiwan’s independence and threatened to take firm and decisive action.
China’s foreign ministry called the meeting a significant violation of the “one-China principle.” China’s foreign ministry said it egregiously violates China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and sends the ‘Taiwan independence’ separatists the incorrect message. China opposes and condemns it vehemently.
Beijing said that the U.S. was going down a “wrong and dangerous path” and asked it to stop immediately any official exchanges with Taiwan, any upgrade in substantive relations with Taiwan, and any attempts to contain China by using Taiwan.
The statement warned that in response to the egregiously wrong action done by the United States and Taiwan to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity, China would take firm and determined measures.
Even though Taiwan’s Ministry of Defense followed China’s Shandong aircraft carrier as it went through the Bashi Strait to the southeast of Taiwan and saw three Chinese ships in the waters around Taiwan, there have been no large-scale military exercises like there were after Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) visit in August 2022.
Antony Blinken, the current U.S. Secretary of State, said at a news conference at NATO headquarters that the U.S. policy toward Taiwan, including adherence to the “one China” policy, has not changed and that Beijing’s aggressive response is not justified. According to Blinken, these transits by Taiwanese officials of high rank are nothing new, and they are private, unofficial, and have been ongoing for years. Every Taiwanese president has passed through the United States, Blinken stated.
Blinken insisted that Beijing shouldn’t use the transits as an excuse to make things worse or try harder to change things. Blinken said the goal is still the same: to bring peace and stability to both sides of the Taiwan Strait and to ensure that any disagreements between the mainland and Taiwan are settled peacefully.