US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin emphasized US support for Taiwan on Saturday, suggesting at a major defense forum in Asia that recent Chinese military activity around the autonomous islands could change the status quo.
In the Shangri-La dialogue in Singapore, Austin mentioned “a steady increase in provocative and unstable military activity near Taiwan.” This includes almost daily military flights by the People’s Republic of China near the island.
“Our policy hasn’t changed, but unfortunately it doesn’t seem to apply to China,” he said.
Austin said Washington remains committed to “one China policy.” This admits Beijing, but admits informal and defensive relations with Taipei.
Although Taiwan and China split during the 1949 civil war, China claims the island to be its territory and does not rule out using military force to occupy the island.
China has in recent years strengthened its military provocation against Taiwan by democracy, with the aim of threatening to accept Beijing’s request for unity with the mainland of communism.
“We continue to focus on peace, stability and status quo throughout the Taiwan Strait,” Austin said in his speech. “But China’s move can undermine the security, stability and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific.”
He showed similarities to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine: “A defenseless attack on peaceful neighbors rejuvenates the world and … reminds us of all the dangers of breaking the international order rooted in rules and respect. “.
“A rule-based international order is as important in the Indo-Pacific as it is in Europe,” Austin said.
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine happens when oppressors trample the rules that protect us all,” he said. “It happens when the great powers decide that the desires of their empire are more important than the rights of their peaceful neighbors. And that is the turmoil and turmoil that none of us want to live in. A preview of the possible world. “
Austin was said to have met with Chinese defense minister General Wei Fenghe on Friday beside the meeting, and Taiwan was taken up prominently.
Austin said at a meeting that the United States did not support Taiwan’s independence, but was also very concerned about China’s recent actions, suggesting that Beijing might be trying to change the status quo.
Meanwhile, Wei complained to Austin about the new US arms sale to Taiwan released this week, saying that it “significantly undermines China’s sovereignty and security interests,” according to a post-conference China state CCTV report. Stated.
China is reportedly “resolutely opposed and strongly condemned,” and the Chinese government and military “resolutely shatter Taiwan’s independence plan and resolutely defend the unity of its homeland,” he told Austin.
Colonel Wu, a spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of National Defense, said Mr. Wei said China “will respond to all moves towards formal independence of Taiwan at any cost, including war.” ..
Austin said in a speech that the United States “behind the principle that the differences between the two banks must be resolved by peaceful means” but will continue to fulfill its commitment to Taiwan.
“This includes helping Taiwan maintain sufficient self-defense capabilities,” he said.
“And that means maintaining our own ability to resist the use of forces and other forms of coercion that endanger the safety and social or economic systems of Taiwanese people.”
The Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, which governs the relationship between the United States and the island, does not require the United States to intervene militarily in the event of a Chinese invasion, but it does secure resources for Taiwan to defend itself. According to Beijing, which has a US policy of preventing unilateral changes in status.
Austin emphasized the “power of partnership” and noted that the United States’ “unparalleled alliance network” in the region has only just deepened and noted its recent efforts with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The importance of “quad” groups in the United States, India, Japan and Australia is increasing. And known as AUKUS, a trilateral security partnership between Australia and the United Kingdom.
He dismissed China’s claim that the United States intends to launch “Asia NATO” in its efforts to reach the Indo-Pacific.
“To be clear, we don’t seek conflicts or conflicts, or seek new Cold Wars, NATO in Asia, or areas divided into hostile blocks,” he said.
Australian Defense Minister Richard Mars said in a forum that AUKUS, where Australia acquires a nuclear submarine from the United States with the help of the United Kingdom, is a technology-sharing relationship and is not included in a series of arrangements that explain NATO. “. “
Australia suddenly withdrew from the contract with France for the submarine to sign the AUKUS contract, and Prime Minister Anthony Albanese agreed to pay Paris 555 million euros ($ 584 million) in compensation on Saturday. Announced.
France’s new defense minister, Sebastian Le Corne, said the alliance with Australia was long, “remembering the sacrifice of a young Australian who died in France during World War I, his country He suggested that he was ready to put the problem off. “
“Every relationship between countries has ups and downs, but when there was a real drama, Australia was there,” he said.
China’s military activity around Taiwan threatens the region
Source link China’s military activity around Taiwan threatens the region