A US Air Force plane used by US Speaker Nancy Pelosi for her Asia trip has landed in Taipei. People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Su-35 fighter jets “cross the Taiwan Strait”. This is the warning from the official Chinese media, which did not give its number.
The Speaker stepped off the ladder of a US Air Force Boeing C-40C landing at Taipei Zhongshan Airport and was greeted by Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu. According to the live streaming preferred by the same ministry. Pelosi is the first speaker to visit the island since Newt Gingrich in 1997. Near her plane’s arrival, the capital’s iconic skyscraper, Taipei 101, launched lighted banners that read: “Welcome to Taiwan, thanks to Speaker Pelosi, Taiwan loves America”.
Tensions are rising around a possible visit to Taiwan by the speaker of the US House of Representatives.
Taiwan had to strengthen security measures due to a bomb threat at Taoyuan International Airport, while the speaker is expected at Songshan, which is used for civil and military purposes. The Airport Police Bureau said it has deployed a special team to ensure security after three explosive threats were made at Taoyuan Airport.
Neither President Tsai Ing-wen nor her office has issued any statement confirming or denying Pelosi’s visit, and no top US official has set foot in Taiwan in the past 25 years. By Beijing. China’s armed forces “will not stand still,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian warned, vowing that his country “will certainly take decisive and strong countermeasures in defense of sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
Beijing’s counter-moves are already underway: it suspended food imports from 180 Taiwanese companies overnight, a decision that Taipei media said would “deal a severe blow” to the local food industry, including agriculture and fishing. “And after similar news last night, Chinese warplanes were seen this morning in the middle of the Taiwan Strait. According to Reuters, according to some sources, warships have been near the separation line since yesterday. Chinese planes have repeatedly carried out tactical maneuvers “touching” the middle line, considered provocations.
In Washington, John Kirby, a spokesman for the National Security Council, said, “Pelosi has not yet announced a trip to Taiwan, and you will have to make that decision.” He reiterated that “nothing has changed in US policy” on Taiwan and that “we do not support its independence”. “Pelosi has the right to go to Taiwan,” he said, adding that China knows the U.S. has “separation of powers and the chamber is an independent branch.” Beijing, a spokesman, insisted it “must not create a crisis”. “There have been speakers and congressional representatives who have visited Taiwan in the past,” summarized Kirby, who urged Beijing “not to use a trip as an excuse to raise the level of tension.”
The response came from China’s ambassador to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, who underlined that “such a visit is very dangerous, very provocative.” “Such a visit would also undermine relations between China and the United States”, according to which Pelosi’s possible visit should not be compared to 1997 when House Speaker Newt Gingrich said that “one initial mistake does not legitimize the next”. “We will do everything possible to protect our sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Zhang concluded. For her part, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying reiterated that the Taiwan visit was “irresponsible and provocative,” adding that responsibility for any potential consequences rests solely with the United States. Hua stressed that “the US side will take responsibility and pay the price for undermining China’s sovereignty and interests”, adding that China and the US “maintain contacts at various levels”, adding that “US officials understand the importance and sensitivity of the problem and how dangerous it is”.
The Taipei Defense Ministry, meanwhile, said its military is “resolute, capable and confident” that Pelosi’s possible visit to the island can protect the island from China’s growing threats. “We are meticulously preparing various plans and forces Adequate will be sent to respond to emergency situations and threats posed by the enemy in accordance with the norms,” the Dicastery announced in a statement.
Russia reaffirmed its support for its China friendship, accusing the US of “destabilization” over a possible visit by Pelosi.
“Washington is destabilizing the world. It has not resolved a single conflict in the past decades, but has fueled many,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on social media after China warned. The arrival of the island, which Beijing considers its own territory.
Meanwhile, Asian stock markets closed sharply: Shanghai -2.29%, Shenzhen -2.92%, Hong Kong -2.36%.
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