China is furious over the United States’ (US) planned visit to Taiwan, describing the move as a threat to “peace and stability.”
The planned high-profile visit to the island nation since the US switched diplomatic recognition to China in 1979 comes as relations between the world’s two biggest powers plunge to historic lows.
“This marks… the first Cabinet member to visit in six years, and the highest level visit by a US Cabinet official since 1979,” said Washington’s de facto embassy, the American Institute in Taiwan, with no date yet given for the visit.
US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar would meet Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen.
Beijing views Taiwan as its own territory, vowing to one day seize it, and bristles at any moves by other countries to recognize or communicate with Taipei.
“China firmly opposes official exchanges between the US and Taiwan,” China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Wang Wenbin said, called for the visit’s cancellation.
“We urge the US to abide by the one-China principle… to avoid seriously endangering Sino-US relations, as well as peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait,” Wang added.