The Communist regime of China wants to “change the status quo” in the Taiwan Strait, said the US Department of State on Monday. While speaking to media personnel, US Department of State spokesman Ned Price said, “Well, it’s been clear for some time that there is one side, there is one party that seeks to change the status quo that has been at the centre of stability and security across the Taiwan Strait for some 40 years now.”
This remark comes after a US congressional delegation led by Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Ed Markey visited the island nation on Monday. The delegation visited the self-ruled island to “reaffirm the United States’ support for Taiwan” and to encourage stability and peace across Taiwan– a move that once again irked China.
Earlier, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi paid a highly provocative visit to Taiwan, an island that China claims to be part of its territory under the “One-China” policy. Following Pelosi’s visit to Taipei, China announced a five-day military drill near Taiwan’s border and after the latest US delegation visited Taiwan, China once again started its military exercises near the Taiwan border.
“It is not the United States. It is not Taiwan. It is the PRC that is challenging the status quo, that is seeking to erode the status quo, and then, even with its recent provocative and unnecessary response to the congressional delegation that visited Taiwan earlier this month, has again demonstrated its willingness to challenge that status quo,” Price added.
He further said that the latest US delegation’s visit to Taiwan is in line with Washington’s long-standing and bipartisan policy. “Members of Congress, congressional delegations, have gone to Taiwan for decades, and they will continue to do so. Some 10 or more congressional delegations have visited Taiwan this year alone. Members of Congress visiting Taiwan is entirely in line with our longstanding “One China” policy. In the face of that – and this goes back to what we saw earlier this month – the PRC has entirely overreacted,” he said.
Meanwhile, Chinese forces carried out more military drills near Taiwan’s Penghu islands after US lawmakers met with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen. Speaking on China’s military drills, Price asserted that the US will not be deterred from flying, from sailing, or from operating in the region in accordance with international law.
“Our response to the PRC’s provocations has been measured, has been responsible. We made it clear that we did not intend to escalate and that there was no reason for a crisis, but we also made it clear – and you heard this from the White House on Friday – that we won’t be deterred from flying, from sailing, from operating in the region in accordance with international law. And that’s why President Biden directed, as you heard on Friday, the USS Ronald Reagan to remain on station longer and announced that additional steps would be forthcoming in our support for Taiwan,” he said.