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Thursday, July 18, 2024

China blasts latest European visit to Taiwan

The Chinese Foreign Ministry denounced the trip as a “farcical political stunt”

China has condemned a recent trip to Taipei by lawmakers from several European nations and the EU itself, insisting all foreign efforts to assist “Taiwan independence” are “doomed to fail.”

Meeting with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen on Thursday, the delegation included officials from Britain, Ukraine, Belgium, Germany, the Czech Republic, Kosovo, the Netherlands and the European Parliament. Two of the lawmakers are currently under sanctions by Beijing in retaliation for previous EU measures. 

Asked about the visit during a Thursday press conference, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian claimed the lawmakers in question “have often deliberately hyped up issues and spread falsehoods and rumors against China.”

“They have little credibility to speak of and are not worth taking up your attention. The farcical political stunt of these few MPs will lead nowhere but only invite disgrace,” Zhao said, adding “a word of advice” to Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party: “to collude with external forces and seek ‘Taiwan independence’ is doomed to fail.”

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During the sit-down with Taiwan’s leader, Ukrainian lawmaker Mykola Kniazhytskyi gifted Tsai a traditional shirt, and also gave Foreign Minister Joseph Wu a pair of boxing gloves signed by former champion fighters Vitali and Vladimir Klitschko. Wu later thanked the official for “passing on the fighting spirit of Ukraine to Taiwan,” while Tsai said she had a “productive meeting” with the lawmakers.

The officials are part of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), a body established in 2020 to form a “coherent response to the rise of the People’s Republic of China,” which it has deemed a “defining challenge for the world’s democratic states.” This week’s trip marked its first formal delegation to Taiwan.

Just as the IPAC visit concluded, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz was set to depart for his own trip to Beijing alongside a number of high-profile business executives. Though a German lawmaker was part of the latest junket to Taiwan, Chinese spokesman Zhao nonetheless voiced hopes that Scholz’s first trip as chancellor would be a success, noting that “China and Germany are comprehensive strategic partners.”

While Taiwan has been self-governed since nationalist forces fled there following the Chinese Civil War in 1949, Beijing considers the island to be part of its sovereign territory. The Chinese government has stated it seeks peaceful reunification with Taiwan, but ultimately claims the right to use force to reclaim the island.

READ MORE: China blasts US ‘nuclear blackmail’

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from RT – Daily news

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