Psaki says US has ‘solid’ support for Taiwan amid China’s aggressions
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Monday said the Biden administration has “rock solid” support for the “leading democracy” Taiwan amid “China’s aggressions” — in remarks likely to irk communist-ruled mainland China.
US-China relations soured during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Beijing government has repeatedly sent warplanes into Taiwan’s airspace amid concern it may one day try to seize the island.
“Our support for Taiwan is rock solid. Taiwan is a leading democracy and major economy and a security partner, and we will continue to strengthen our relationship across all areas — all the areas we cooperate, including on economic issues,” Psaki said at her daily press briefing.
“We’re committed to the importance of the US-Taiwan trade and investment relationships and we will continue to strengthen our trade relationship with Taiwan, which is why we are looking forward to the upcoming trade and investment framework agreement council meeting, which was recently announced.”
Mainland China regards Taiwan as a renegade province and the island has not declared independence. The anti-communist Republic of China relocated to Taipei after losing the Chinese Civil War in 1949.
The US military was an important guarantor of Taiwan’s de facto independence, but since 1979 only extends diplomatic recognition to Beijing.
President Biden thus far has kept in place economic tariffs on China that were imposed by former President Donald Trump and has continued to emphasize a desire to return some supply chains to the US.
In April, the US ambassador to Palau visited Taiwan in what was believed to be the first official trip by a top US diplomat to Taiwan since 1979.
Secretary of State Tony Blinken said this month that the US and Taiwan will discuss setting up a trade deal.
The Biden administration has kept in place sanctions against China for human rights abuses against Uyghur Muslims and for eliminating Hong Kong’s political autonomy.
Trump claimed repeatedly during last year’s campaign that China would “own” the US if Biden won, in part because of his son’s stake in a Chinese investment fund co-owned by companies controlled by the communist government. As of this month, the first son reportedly has yet to divest his stake.