In response to the administration’s announcement of the arms deal this week, the Chinese Embassy released a Thursday statement alleging interference in its internal affairs and saying the U.S. “undermines China’s sovereignty and security interests by selling arms to the Taiwan region.”
The sale includes 40 self-propelled artillery units, marking the first distribution of defense support for Taiwan since the president took office.
The provision will improve Taiwan’s security in its efforts to ensure peace and defense of the Taiwan Strait, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen’s office indicated in a statement Thursday.
The Chinese Embassy said the provision undermines international law and “violates the one-China principle and provisions of the three China-US joint communiques,” adding that it sends the “wrong signals to ‘Taiwan independence’ separatist forces.”
“China will resolutely take legitimate and necessary counter-measures in light of the development of the situation,” the embassy added on Thursday.
Taiwan ultimately split from Chinese Communist Party rule in 1949, but it continues to be claimed by the Chinese government and is classified as “China” by the United Nations.
In May, China requested the Biden administration to reconsider America’s stance on Taiwan following a meeting between top U.S. diplomats and Taiwanese diplomats in France.
“There is only one China,” China’s embassy in France said at the time.
Former President Donald Trump‘s approval for a $600 million sale of MQ-9B drones to Taiwan in November also roiled Chinese officials. The CCP has engaged in more prevalent military flyovers in the region, sending a record of 28 military planes into Taiwanese airspace in June.
U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said last month that Washington would not “seek confrontation” with China, adding, “We’re working with Taiwan to increase its own capabilities and to increase its readiness to deter threats and coercion.”
Austin said the administration is “upholding our commitments under the Taiwan Relations Act and consistent with our one-China policy.”