Beijing: China strongly opposes the possible sale of $500 million worth of F-16 fighter jet equipment from the United States to Taiwan, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Thursday.
On Wednesday, the Pentagon said that the US State Department had approved the sale of advanced sensor equipment for its F-16 fighter jets to Taiwan. The sale will improve Taiwan’s capability to meet current and future threats, the State Department added in a statement.
The sale undermines the One-China policy and provisions of the three joint Chinese-US communiques, Wang said, adding that it also “violates international legislation and basic norms of international relations.”
“[The sale] undermines China’s sovereignty and its security interests, jeopardizes peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait, and sends misguiding signals to Taiwan’s separatist forces. China expresses strong dissatisfaction and strongly opposes [the sale],” the spokesperson said, adding that Taiwan is an integral part of China and that the country will not tolerate any external interference in the Taiwanese issue. He also said that China is ready to take “decisive and effective” measures in order to protect its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Taiwan has been governed independently from mainland China since 1949. Beijing regards the island as its province, while Taiwan maintains that it is an autonomous entity but stops short of declaring independence.
Beijing opposes any official foreign contact with Taipei and regards Chinese sovereignty over the island as indisputable.