Beijing claims Taiwan independence equals war


(MENAFN) In a stern response to comments by Taiwanese pro-independence politicians, Beijing's government spokesperson, Chen Binhua, cautioned that China is open to peaceful reunification with Taiwan but will not tolerate any separatist activities. The warning comes as Taiwan's ruling Democratic Progressive Party members, Lai Ching-te and Hsiao Bi-khim, raised concerns about the island facing threats from the mainland, particularly ahead of the upcoming presidential election.

Lai, positioning himself as an advocate for Taiwanese independence, is campaigning for the presidency in the January elections, with Hsiao, a former envoy to the United States, as his running mate. In response, Chen, who serves as the spokesperson for China's State Council for Taiwan Affairs Office, emphasized that Beijing will not show leniency towards any forces in Taiwan promoting separatism.

Referring to China's Anti-secession Law of 2005, Chen reiterated that China views Taiwan as an integral part of its territory. This legislation grants Beijing the authority to employ arbitrary, non-peaceful means to achieve unification with Taiwan, which has been self-governing since the Chinese Civil War in 1949.

"I want to emphasize that Taiwan independence means war," declared Chen, condemning Lai and Hsiao as separatists. He accused the duo of distorting facts and downplaying the risks associated with separatist activities to mislead voters ahead of the 2024 election.

Tensions over the Taiwan issue have garnered international attention, with Chinese leader Xi Jinping cautioning United States President Joe Biden during a recent meeting in California that Taiwan remains a potentially volatile issue in Sino-United States relations. The escalating rhetoric and the explicit warning from Beijing underscore the delicate nature of the cross-strait relations, with implications for the broader geopolitical landscape in the Asia-Pacific region.

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