China expresses alarm over Trump’s Taiwan comments

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China has said it has “serious concern” over U.S. President-elect Donald Trump’s remarks about Taiwan, warning that the abandonment of the so-called One-China policy would impact relations between the two countries.

Geng Shuang, a spokesman for China’s foreign ministry, emphasized at a press briefing in Beijing on Monday that the One-China policy represents “the political foundation” in the development of U.S.-China relations.

“If such a foundation is disturbed or violated, the healthy and stable relations between China and the U.S., and cooperation in the two countries’ major fields, are out of the question,” Geng said. “We urge the new U.S. government and leader to fully understand the high sensitivity of the Taiwan issue.”

Monday’s warning came just hours after Trump remarked during a TV interview that, unless China is willing to make concessions on trade and political issues such as North Korea, he sees no reason for the United States to stick to the One-China policy.

“I fully understand the one-China policy but I don’t know why we have to be bound by one-China policy unless we make a deal with China having to do with other things, including trade,” the president-elect told Fox News, just weeks after Trump’s controversial call with Taiwan’s leader.

Trump added: “Look, we’re being hurt very badly by China with devaluation, with taxing us heavy at the borders when we don’t tax them, with building a massive fortress in the middle of the South China Sea which they shouldn’t be doing, and frankly with not helping us at all with North Korea.”

China’s government mouthpiece media, in an editorial published on Monday, urged Trump to understand that the One-China policy cannot be used for bargaining, adding that, in the field of diplomacy, the president-elect is “ignorant like a child.”

China considers Taiwan to be an ‘inalienable’ part of its territory even though the island has governed itself since the end of the civil war in 1949. China typically uses the One-China policy as a requirement for diplomatic relations.

Trump sparked controversy earlier this month when he took a call from Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, marking the first conversation between a U.S. president or president-elect and a leader of Taiwan since the United States cut diplomatic relations in 1979, when the American government recognized the People’s Republic of China to include Taiwan.

Ever since, the United States has maintained mostly low-level diplomatic contacts with Taiwan through a representative office in Taipei. China fiercely criticized the United States in early 2010 when it sold weapons to Taiwan, prompting China to suspend a number of military exchange programs.

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