Chinese military ‘will not stand by’ as Nancy Pelosi visits Taiwan | China

Amid increasingly hostile threats from China, news outlets report that Nancy Pelosi will continue to visit Taiwan despite attempts by the Biden administration to warn her of the shutdown.

Tingting Liu, foreign affairs correspondent at Taiwanese news channel TVBS, reported that sources had told her that Pelosi will arrive in the capital Taipei on Tuesday evening. CNN also reported that the visit is expected to continue, citing a senior Taiwanese government official and a US official.

The Taiwanese government has not publicly commented on the reports.

Should Pelosi take Taiwan on her journey through Asia, it would be the first visit from a speaker of the U.S. House in a quarter of a century. Beijing, which claims the self-governing island as its own province, has made it clear it would view such a move as an unacceptable provocation.

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China increased its warning on Monday, saying its military “wouldn’t stand idly by” if the visit happened.

The US official told CNN that in light of that admonition, the Pentagon was “working around the clock” to monitor Chinese movements in the region.

Pelosi’s potential visit at a time of heightened tension with China is a fraught matter for both the US and the Chinese. As a House speaker, she is third in line for the presidency, after Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.

From a Chinese perspective, a visit from a lawmaker so closely tied constitutionally to the presidency magnifies the violation. China’s spokesman, Zhao Lijian, said that because of Pelosi’s status as the “No. 3 official of the US government”, a visit to Taiwan “would have a huge political impact”.

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the world’s largest army, celebrated the 95th anniversary of its founding on Monday.

The possible Taiwanese leg of Pelosi’s tour is not yet in her public schedule. If she continues with the visit, it will be the first for a speaker of the U.S. House since Newt Gingrich traveled there. 1997. Beijing protested the trip, but eventually swallowed the irritation.

Officially, Pelosi only visits Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan during this trip. But Michael McCaul, Texas Republican and senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Democrat Anna Eshoo told US media last week that Pelosi had invited them to Taiwan. Both declined due to a scheduling conflict.

Pelosi’s journey comes at a time of extreme geopolitical uncertainty in the region. On Monday, they and a six-member congressional delegation held talks with Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. The Singaporean leader “emphasized the importance of stable US-China relations for regional peace and security,” said an official statement from Lee’s office.

Leading up to PLA’s founding anniversary Monday, the Chinese military conducted “live-fire exercises” near the Pingtan Islands off Fujian province, according to the official Xinhua news agency on Saturday. The Maritime Safety Administration warned ships to avoid the area.

Since reports of Pelosi’s possible trip to Taiwan two weeks ago, state media in Beijing have stepped up their criticism of US policy towards Taiwan. In recent days, Chinese diplomats on social media have also echoed China’s stance and reiterated Beijing’s “one China principle”.

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George Yin, a senior fellow at the Center for China Studies at National Taiwan University in Taipei, said the US faced a strategic dilemma when it came to stabilizing the Taiwan Strait.

“On the one hand, the US should show its support for Taiwan, especially since China often portrays the US as a paper tiger that lacks the determination to come to Taiwan’s aid,” Yin said.

“On the other hand, the US needs to reassure China that it still adheres to the one-China principle. Pelosi’s expected visit illustrates how difficult it is to strike a good strategic balance.”

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