China says U.S. must stop Taiwan arms sales

BEIJING Mon Mar 7, 2011 1:37am EST

Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi (R) talks with his South Korean counterpart Kim Sung-hwan (L) during their meeting at the Foreign Ministry in Seoul February 23, 2011. REUTERS/Jung Yeon-je/Pool

Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi (R) talks with his South Korean counterpart Kim Sung-hwan (L) during their meeting at the Foreign Ministry in Seoul February 23, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Jung Yeon-je/Pool

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BEIJING (Reuters) - The United States will put improved relations with Beijing at risk if it does not stop selling arms to Taiwan, China's Foreign Minister said on Monday.

The world's two biggest economies have sought to steady ties after a year that exposed strains over human rights, Taiwan, Tibet and the gaping U.S. trade deficit with China. Chinese President Hu Jintao visited the White House in January.

"The atmosphere at the moment in Sino-U.S. relations is good," Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi told a news conference on the sidelines of the ongoing meeting of China's parliament.

Vice President Joe Biden will visit China in the middle of this year, after which Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping will go the United States at "an appropriate time", Yang said.

"Of course, it is an objective reality that China and the United States have some differences or even friction over some issues," he added. "What's important is to properly handle these differences on the basis of mutual respect."

Early last year, Beijing reacted with fury to the Obama administration plans for a new round of weapons sales to Taiwan, the self-ruled island that China deems an illegitimate breakaway province, threatening to sanction the U.S. companies involved.

"We urge the United States to ... stop selling arms to Taiwan and take concrete actions to support the peaceful development of cross-Strait relations. This is very important in upholding the overall interests of China-U.S. relations," Yang said.

The United States is obliged under the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act to help the island defend itself.

While China-friendly Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou's promotion of closer economic ties with Beijing has reduced the risk of military conflict, the island is nonetheless seeking to shore up the balance of power against China.

Beijing has threatened to attack if the island tries to declare independence, and China has been outpacing it in its military build-up.

(Reporting by Chris Buckley; Writing by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Ken Wills and Alex Richardson)

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Comments (17)
go2goal wrote:
I wonder how we’d react if China sold weapons to Cuba or even Canada? Or if the Chinese, instead of US guns shows, became the source of weapons for the drug cartels in Mexico.

Where do we (the US) start drawing the line between defending our shores and land (as per the constitution) and being military interventionists on the other side of the world?

It’s time to test the conventional wisdom of the US military being forward deployed around the world….we need to revert back to the pre-WW II US Military charter. Exactly as President Ike Eisenhower was advising in his 1960 farewell address the nation.

Mar 06, 2011 11:34pm EST  --  Report as abuse
kwatson4761 wrote:
NO!! Its china that should back off on this America will never throw a democratic govt to the wolves of communist aggression
if THEY want better relations with US then that is how it is
we will not be dictated by a totalatarian council as to what we do

Mar 06, 2011 11:53pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Kyung wrote:
2010, the PLA propaganda went on an overdrive, countering neutral neighbours into weak enemies which had to look to the US for support. China’s arrogance and intemperate military postures in the South China Sea over the disputed Spratly Islands, provoking Japan over the Diayou (Senkaku in Japan) Islands, and pro-North Korean position when Pyongyang used military action against South Korea
The US Defence Review of February this year also clearly spells out that the US will make greater efforts to shift its focus to the Asia Pacific Region (APR) and address the military rise of China in the region. The Japanese White Paper on Defence focuses on China’s military threat and the opaqueness of China’s military doctrine, and the Australian defence review late last year (2010) spoke on similar lines. Both countries basically concentrated on China’s threat to the APR which includes South East Asia (SEA) in the context of Chinese statements and actions over the last two years. But China is following the old Maoist strategy of “two steps forward, one step backward”, which countries in the region are no longer willing to buy
By Bhaskar Roy – The Eurasia Review

Mar 06, 2011 11:54pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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