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China Strongly Protests U.S. Arms Sales to Taiwan (2001-04-25)

    

On April 25, Vice Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing urgently summoned U.S. Ambassador Joseph W. Prueher and lodged solemn representations and strong protests as instructed by the Chinese government.

Li noted that the U.S. government announced today that it will sell advanced weapons and equipment worth billions of U.S. dollars to Taiwan, including four Kidd-class destroyers, eight diesel- powered submarines, and 12 P-3C Orion submarine-hunting aircraft. This wrong decision made by the U.S. side marked an escalation in its arms sales to Taiwan, which constitutes a flagrant violation of the three Sino-U.S. joint communiqués, especially the one signed on August 17, 1982, and an open provocation to China's sovereignty and territorial integrity. The U.S. act can only further the arrogance of pro- Taiwan independence forces to split China, intensify the tension across the Taiwan Straits, and harm peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. Such a move will also seriously impact on bilateral cooperation in the nonproliferation field and cause a destructive damage to the Sino- U.S. relations. The Chinese government and people are extremely indignant at and firmly opposed to this decision by the U.S. government. Li said he was ordered to make solemn representations with and a strong protest to the U.S. government on this issue.

Li stressed that the U.S. government made explicit commitments in the Sino-U.S. joint communiqué signed on August 17, 1982, saying that “it does not seek to carry out a long-term policy of arms sales to Taiwan, that its arms sales to Taiwan will not exceed, either in qualitative or in quantitative terms, the level of those supplied in recent years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the United States and China, and that it intends gradually to reduce its sale of arms to Taiwan, leading, over a period of time, to a final resolution.” However, the U.S. government has gone back on its word and has been constantly selling various advanced weaponry to Taiwan, going even farther on the dangerous road of selling arms to Taiwan.

Li noted what the U.S. side has decided to sell to Taiwan now are weaponry with advanced performance and huge value. The U.S. side has even claimed to help the Taiwan authorities procure offensive submarines from other countries, which scotched the U.S. lies of selling only defensive weaponry to Taiwan. The Chinese people and the people of the world realize once again that the U.S. government does not honor its commitments, and facts have revealed that the U.S. does not actually want sustained peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits. The Chinese people cannot help asking: What are the intentions of the U.S. side after all in selling arms to Taiwan? Where on earth is the U.S. trying to lead Sino-U.S. relations? We would like to inform the U.S. side that the firm resolution and determination of the Chinese people in safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity are indestructible. No one can stop the Chinese people in their endeavor for reunification of the motherland.

Li pointed out that Sino-U.S. relations are now at a sensitive and complicated juncture. The Chinese side demands that the U.S. side fully understand the seriousness, danger and destructive nature of U.S. arms sales to Taiwan, take seriously China's solemn stand, abide by the provisions of the three Sino-U.S. joint communiqués, especially the one signed on August 17, 1982, immediately revoke its erroneous decision and give up arms sales to Taiwan, so as to avoid further damage of Sino-U.S. relations. The U.S. side shall otherwise be held responsible for all the consequences arising therefrom, and the Chinese side reserves the right to make further responses to the matter.

In another development, Chinese Ambassador to the United States Yang Jiechi lodged solemn representations and a strong protest on April 24 local time to a top official with the U.S. State Department against the announced U.S. arms sales to Taiwan.



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