US President Joe Biden has said that US troops would defend Taiwan in case of a Chinese invasion.
In an interview to CBS news, when asked about whether US forces would protect the democratically run island (i.e. Taiwan) in the event of a Chinese invasion, Biden replied, “Yes, if in fact, there was an unprecedented attack.”
He also stated that the US upholds a “One China” stance.
“We are not moving, we are not encouraging their being independent … that’s their decision,” Biden said, as reported by Reuters.
Deutsche Welle cited a White House official following the interview, who stated that US policy regarding Taiwan had not changed. The United States has long maintained a stance of “strategic ambiguity”, refusing to say outright whether it would use force to defend Taiwan.
“The president has said this before, including in Tokyo earlier this year. He also made clear then that our Taiwan policy hasn’t changed. That remains true,” the official said.
A BBC report citing Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu as appreciating “US government’s rock-solid security commitment to Taiwan”. Moreover, he further said that Taipei would continue to deepen its “close security partnership” with Washington.
Washington has always taken a very diplomatic stance on this issue. The building block of its relationship with Beijing is its support for the One China policy which acknowledges only one Chinese administration. However, it also upholds tight ties with Taiwan and sells armaments to it under the Taiwan Relations Act, which demands that the US give the island the capacity to defend itself.
According to Reuters, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning responded to Biden’s statement, expressing serious concerns.
“We are willing to do our best to strive for peaceful reunification. At the same time, we will not tolerate any activities aimed at secession,” Ning said.
She also urged US to address the Taiwan issue “carefully and properly” and not send “wrong signals” to Taiwan separatist forces. She also warned US to not disturb Taiwan peace and Sino-US relations.
“There is only one China in the world, Taiwan is part of China, and the government of the People’s Republic of China is the only legitimate government of China,” she stated.