China reiterates opposition to US arms sale to Taiwan

Beijing, Dec 16 (IANS) China on Wednesday reiterated its opposition to a potential arms deal between the US and the island nation of Taiwan.

“We resolutely oppose any countries that sell weapons, related equipment or technology to Taiwan in any form or (supported by any) ‘excuse’,” said Ma Xiaoguang, spokesperson for the Chinese State Council Taiwan Affairs Office, at a press conference here.

Ma added that the mainland China’s stance had been consistent, clear and firm on the issue, Xinhua reported.

All parties should recognise that harmonious cross-Strait relationship can only be guaranteed through the united opposition of “Taiwan independence”, and adherence to the 1992 consensus which was built around the one-China principle, Ma said.

“Meanwhile, we also hope that the Taiwanese-side prizes the peaceful development of relations and does more that is conducive to improvement and development of relations,” he said.

On Tuesday, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei urged the US to stop the arms sale, as it would interfere in China’s domestic affairs and harm China-US relations.

The Taiwan issue dates back to 1949 when, with the Chinese Civil War turning decisively in the Communists’ (CPC) favour, the ROC government led by the Kuomintang (KMT) retreated to Taipei, in Taiwan, while the CPC proclaimed the PRC government in Beijing.

Since then, the relations between China and Taiwan have been characterized by limited contact, tensions, and instability.

More recently, questions around the political and legal status of Taiwan have focused on the alternative prospects of political unification with China or full Taiwanese independence. The People’s Republic remains hostile to any formal declaration of independence and maintains its claim over Taiwan.

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