US general election is approaching, and tensions between China and the US are still rising. This week, in response to the earlier US approval of arms sales to Taiwan, China announced that it would impose sanctions on several US companies, individuals, and entities. The United States subsequently announced plans to continue arms sales to Taiwan.
The US State Department announced last week that it approved the sale of weapons and equipment totaling approximately US$1.8 billion to Taiwan. In response to this, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said on Monday (October 26) that China will play a bad role in the arms sales to Taiwan such as Lockheed Martin, Boeing Defense, Raytheon and other US companies and in the process of arms sales to Taiwan. Of U.S. relevant individuals and entities imposed sanctions.
Soon after China announced the sanctions, the Trump administration indicated to the U.S. Congress that the U.S. plans to sell the Harpoon missile system worth $2.37 billion to Taiwan. Boeing, sanctioned by China, is the main contractor of the “harpoon” transaction.
Ignoring China’s sanctions, U.S. approves arms sales to Taiwan
Zhao Lijian stated at a regular press conference on Monday that China’s actions are to “protect national interests.”
“The Chinese side firmly opposes this and strongly condemns this. The relevant U.S. individuals and entities that played a bad role in China imposed sanctions.” He said.
Zhao Lijian also said that he urged the US to stop arms sales to Taiwan and any military ties between the US and Taiwan. “We will continue to take necessary measures to defend national sovereignty and security interests.”
However, Zhao Lijian did not give details on the specific content and timetable of the sanctions.
Moreover, Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Ou Jiang’an said on Tuesday that he “deeply regretted” China’s remarks. “Taiwan will continue to urge the US government… to continue to fulfil its security commitments to Taiwan and continue to sell the weapons necessary for Taiwan’s defence.”
U.S. new arms sales plan
Only a few hours after China announced the sanctions, the US State Department stated that it would sell the Harpoon missile system worth US$2.37 billion to Taiwan.
“The United States has a long-term interest in peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and believes that Taiwan’s security is essential to the security and stability of the wider Indo-Pacific region,” the US State Department said.
The US State Department stated that the arms sales will not change the regional military balance.
“Harpoon” missiles are capable of striking ships and land targets. According to the Associated Press, Boeing said that the Harpoon missile uses a GPS-assisted inertial navigation system and can launch a detonation warhead weighing up to 500 pounds. This weapon can strike coastal defence sites, surface-to-air missile sites, unshielded aircraft, ships in ports, and ports and industrial facilities.
1.8 billion arms sales content
The arms sales agreement passed last week includes three systems for the rocket launch, sensing and artillery. This was including 135 precision-guided cruise missiles. As well as mobile ignited rocket launchers and aerial reconnaissance pods that can be connected to fighters.
BBC Taiwan correspondent Xiao Aijun reported that after Trump took office. The number of weapons sold by the United States to Taiwan has increased significantly.
Xiao Aijun said that Taiwan has also been seeking support from the current US government. She also pointed out that, unlike the previous US administrations, the current Trump administration seems willing to challenge the delicate balance between the United States and China and Taiwan for decades.
In the past, China has imposed sanctions on Lockheed Martin and other US companies for arms sales to Taiwan.
According to Reuters, Boeing issued a statement stating that the company’s partnership with China’s aviation industry has long-term benefits and Boeing remains committed to this goal. Lockheed Martin said that all of the company’s international military sales are strictly regulated by the US government. Its presence in China is limited. Thor did not immediately respond to this.
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