| 29 February 2024, Thursday |

Taiwan urges China to stop sabre-rattling and start talking

The president of Taiwan’s China-policy-making Mainland Affairs Council said on Friday that China should cease threatening Taiwan and maintain peace and stability as it increased political and military pressure on the island it claimed as its own.

Since August, when it conducted blockade maneuvers around the island in response to a visit to Taipei by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, China has increased military activity close to democratically-governed Taiwan.

“Beijing should stop its sabrer-rattling as it only deepens the gap between the two sides and raises tensions in the region,” Mainland Affairs Council minister Chiu Tai-san told a forum in Taipei.

“We urge mainland China to lay down arms and maintain peace and stability. The key to peace is to reverse the mindset of handling problems with force,” Chiu said, adding Beijing should resolve disagreements with Taipei via “a constructive dialogue without preconditions.”

Taiwan is seen as Chinese territory. President Xi Jinping stated earlier this month that it is up to the Chinese people to settle the Taiwan dispute and that China will never give up using force against Taiwan in a speech at the beginning of the Communist Party Congress in Beijing.

Taiwan asserts that only the 23 million residents of the island can determine its future and that any claims to sovereignty by Taiwan are invalid because the island has never been governed by the People’s Republic of China.

  • Reuters