the new president extends his arms to the United States to fight against China’s “authoritarian expansionism”

the new president extends his arms to the United States to fight against China’s “authoritarian expansionism”
the new president extends his arms to the United States to fight against China’s “authoritarian expansionism”

The new president of Taiwan is not impressed by Beijing’s attempts at intimidation. Lai Ching-te notably affirmed, this Wednesday, that he will work with the United States to face “ authoritarian expansionism » from Beijing. A statement made as part of a second visit by American parliamentarians to the island, a week after China’s military maneuvers around the latter.

The Taiwanese president had already received a visit on Monday from another delegation from the House of Representatives, led by Republican Michael McCaul, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of this chamber. This Wednesday, addressing this delegation, the new president called for continued support from Taipei’s most powerful ally.

To meet the challenge of the pandemic, we helped each other. Now that we face authoritarian expansionism, we continue to work together “, Lai Ching-te said during a meeting with US senators. “ In the future, we will do everything possible to safeguard democracy and make it shine in the world “, he added.

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Democratic Senator Tammy Duckworth told the Taiwanese president that he could count on the delegation to always be present alongside Taiwan. She also announced that she would join the “ Stand With Taiwan Act » from Republican Senator Dan Sullivan, a bill aimed at imposing economic, energy or financial sanctions on China in the event of intervention or use of force in Taiwan.

For Dan Sullivan, the visit highlighted the “ bipartisan, rock-solid support » in Taiwan. The delegation also included the presence of Democratic Senators Chris Coons and Laphonza Butler.

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs criticized the meeting on Wednesday, which it described as “ sneaky (and) sends a seriously wrong signal to the separatist force for Taiwan independence “.

China shows its muscles

At the origin of this rise in tensions, a speech by Lai Ching-te, who was inaugurated last Monday as president of Taiwan. The latter had notably indicated that “ the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the People’s Republic of China (mainland China ruled by the Communist Party) are not subordinate to each other “. Gold, Beijing considers the island as one of its provinces, which it has not yet managed to reunify with its territory since the end of the Chinese civil war and the coming to power of the communists on the mainland in 1949.

To demonstrate its opposition to these comments, according to it separatists, China carried out military maneuvers around Taiwan for 48 hours Thursday and Friday. This exercise “Janointed Sword-2024A » (Or ” United Sharp Swords-2024A “) was intended to send a signal of disapproval to the authorities of the island territory.

Since 2016, China has increased its military and political pressure on Taiwan. And its military ships, drones and fighter planes maintain an almost daily presence around the island. In a tense context, Beijing therefore continues to send planes and ships around the island. On Sunday morning, Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said it had detected seven Chinese aircraft, 14 combat ships and four Chinese coast guard vessels in the past 24 hours.

On Monday, 21 Chinese military aircraft and 15 navy or coast guard vessels were again detected around the island in the past 24 hours. Ten of the Chinese planes even crossed the air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in the past 24 hours, Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said, adding that it had responded appropriately.

Tensions that could continue

Above all, this Wednesday the Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) in Beijing announced that other military maneuvers could follow.

As long as provocations for Taiwan independence continue, the People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) actions to defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity will continue. said Zhu Fenglian, spokesperson for the TAO, at a press conference.

The latter described President Lai’s rhetoric as ” extremely reckless “, adding that she ” risked » to train « inevitably a war across the Taiwan Strait and cause serious damage to our compatriots in Taiwan “. “ We will never tolerate, condone or allow this, and we must counter and punish this “, she said. “ The greater the provocation, the stronger the response “, she finally added.

(With AFP)

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