The Chinese regime is escalating its hostility towards Taiwan as U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi visits the island nation on her tour of Asian countries.
Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan makes her the highest-ranking U.S. government official to visit the democratic nation in over 25 years in an effort to bolster America’s unofficial relationship with Taiwan.
In response to Pelosi’s expected arrival in Taiwan, China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) posted the simple comment “Preparing for war!” on the Chinese social media app Sina Weibo. The post garnered 300,000 thumbs-ups in 12 hours, with thousands of comments parroting the sentiment.
China’s defence ministry spokesperson Tan Kefei made clear that China does not support Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan, claiming it is a violation of the One-China principle and a threat to China’s national security.
“Chinese side has repeatedly made clear our firm opposition to the visit,” said Tan.
“As the ‘third most important figure’ of the U.S. government, if Speaker Pelosi visits Taiwan, the move will seriously violate the One-China principle and the provisions in the three China-U.S. joint communiques, severely endanger China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
The House speaker is expected to meet with pro-Taiwan activists and visit Taiwan’s presidential office and parliament, despite China’s warnings that their military will not sit idle if their guidance is opposed.
“The Chinese side urges the U.S. side to take practical actions to fulfill its commitment of not supporting ‘Taiwan independence,’ Tan said.
“Should the U.S. side insist on doing otherwise, the Chinese military will never sit idle by, and will certainly take strong and resolute measures.”
Ahead of Pelosi’s arrival in Taiwan, China’s PLA dispatched multiple warplanes to buzz fly along the Taiwan strait’s border, marking the end of Chinese territory and the beginning of Taiwanese territory. The PLA also sent several warships to the dividing line on Monday and has not moved them since.
While the Taiwanese government has not commented on Pelosi’s visit, Taiwan’s citizens have by in large made their support for Pelosi’s visit known – displaying messages welcoming the House speaker on large buildings while affirming Taiwan’s appreciation for the United States.
The last time a U.S. government official of Pelosi’s standing went to Taiwan was in 1997, when House Speaker Newt Gingrich visited the nation.
China has also been becoming increasingly hostile with the Canadian Armed Forces, as PLA warplanes were reported flying dangerously close to Canadian aircraft in an attempt to intimdate Canadian military men while conducting a United Nations mission.
Conservative leadership candidate Scott Aitchison took to Twitter to applaud Pelosi for the visit to Taiwan, while affirming that Canada must step-up.
Aitchison has consistently made is support for Taiwanese independence known, as his campaign has suggested that Canada end its historic support for the One-China policy.
According to the Aitchison campaign, an Aitchison government would help Taiwan become a member of the international community in joining organizations like the World Health Organization, INTERPOL and include Taiwan in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.
“For the better part of 50 years, Canada’s and Western foreign policy was premised on the basis that increased trade and prosperity with China would lead to greater adherence to human rights and liberalization of communism’s harsh edges,” said Aitchison.
While prime minister Trudeau has said that “Taiwan’s inclusion in multilateral forums [and] multilateral bodies to make sure that their perspective is heard,” Canada did not sign a proposal to include Taiwan in the World Health Assembly when given the opportunity.