BEIJING (Dispatches) — China on Wednesday sharply criticized a visit to Taiwan by a senior Pentagon official and reaffirmed it has sanctioned Lockheed Martin and a unit of Raytheon for supplying military equipment to the region.
Asked about the reported visit by Michael Chase, deputy assistant secretary of defense for China, office spokesperson Zhu Fenglian said China “resolutely opposes any official interaction and military collaboration” between the U.S. and Taiwan.
Efforts by Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party to cement the island’s independence with foreign assistance are “doomed to failure,” Zhu told reporters.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said a “new round of tensions” in the Taiwan Strait was a result of the Taiwanese authorities’ attempts to “seek independence with U.S. support, as well as the U.S. intention to contain China with Taiwan.”
“We urge the U.S. to ... stop any form of official U.S.-Taiwan contacts, stop meddling in the Taiwan issue and stop creating new factors of tension in the Taiwan Strait,” Wang said at a daily briefing.
Tensions between the U.S. and China again ratcheted up last month after Washington accused Beijing of sending a spy balloon that was shot down over the American East Coast. Secretary of State Antony Blinken canceled a trip to Beijing in the wake of the incident and said over the weekend that the United States was concerned China would provide weapons to Russia for its war in Ukraine.
On a visit to Moscow Tuesday, the Communist Party’s top diplomat Wang Yi said relations between Moscow and Beijing are “solid as a rock” and will “stand the test of the volatile international situation.”
Russia and China have an “excellent opportunity to continue close strategic cooperation and contacts to protect our shared strategic interests,” Wang said.
A delegation of U.S. lawmakers visiting Taiwan met on Tuesday with President Tsai Ing-wen, who said she looked for increased cooperation on issues from security to climate change.
On Monday, the delegation met with the head of the legislature as part of their five-day visit. They include Reps. Ro Khanna of California, Tony Gonzales of Texas, Jake Auchincloss of Massachusetts and Jonathan Jackson of Illinois.
On Tuesday, Russia’s security head held talks with the Chinese Communist Party’s foreign policy chief, calling for closer cooperation with Beijing to resist Western pressure.
Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of Russia’s National Security Council, said during a meeting with Wang Yi, the party’s most senior foreign policy official who is visiting Moscow that the West sought to deter Russia and China as part of its attempts to preserve global domination.
“The bloody events in Ukraine staged by the West is just one example of it,” said Patrushev, a longtime associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin. “All that is being done against Russia and China and to the detriment of developing nations.”
Wang said that the relations between Moscow and Beijing are “solid as a rock” and will “stand the test of the volatile international situation.”
The Chinese official noted that Russia and China have “excellent opportunity to continue close strategic cooperation and contacts to protect our shared strategic interests.”