It was expected. China will not go unanswered after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan last Tuesday. An event that was experienced as “a serious violation” American commitments vis-à-vis China, which “seriously undermines peace and stability” regions, in the words of the Chinese Foreign Minister. As a result, Beijing, which considers Taiwan as an integral part of its territory, announced on Friday that it would end cooperation with the United States on multiple issues. China will ” suspend US-China climate change talks » and cancel a meeting between the military leaders, as well as two meetings on security, the ministry said, citing the ” contempt » demonstrated by Nancy ” Pelosi on China’s strong opposition » on his visit to Taiwan. This announcement concerns the surprise climate agreement that was signed between the two powers, which are also the two largest emitters of greenhouse gases, at the COP26 summit in Glasgow last year. They pledged to work together to accelerate climate action over the next decade and to meet regularly to ” tackling the climate crisis ».
The Foreign Ministry also warned that the country would suspend cooperation with Washington on the repatriation of illegal migrants, as well as on justice, transnational crime and the fight against drugs.
Earlier today, China had already announced ” impose penalties » against Nancy Pelosi and her immediate family without knowing more about the nature of these sanctions. The Speaker of the US House of Representatives joins the list of US representatives targeted by the Chinese authorities in recent years for having, according to them, acted against the interests of the country and spoke out on human rights concerning Hong Kong and Xinjiang (north-west), sometimes without specifying the nature of these sanctions. Last March, China had, in addition, applied visa restrictions to an undisclosed list of American officials who allegedly ” fabricated lies on human rights issues involving China ». Former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, as well as Peter Navarro, who had been a trade adviser to Donald Trump, have also been sanctioned in the past: they are banned from entering China or doing business with Chinese companies.
Most important military exercises in its history
Beyond the sanctions, Beijing reacted to Nancy Pelosi’s visit by conducting the largest military exercises in its history around the island. Started Thursday, they should last until Sunday and are carried out in six areas around the island. Chinese armed forces fired “11 Missiles” Dongfeng-type ballistics “between 1:56 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. [heure locale] in the waters north, south and east of Taiwan” Thursday, according to the Taipei Defense Ministry. China has also confirmed its missile launches. According to the official New China Agency, the People’s Liberation Army has ” flies more than 100 warplanes, including fighters and bombers »just as it mobilized “more than 10 destroyers and frigates” Thursday. State broadcaster CCTV claimed that Chinese missiles even flew over Taiwan for the first time. For its part, Japan has counted nine, including four ” would have flown over the main island of Taiwan ».
China has also deployed its air force and navy in six maritime zones around Taiwan, approaching up to 20 km from the coast and disrupting some of the busiest trade routes in the world. This Friday, Taipei claimed that 68 Chinese fighter jets and 13 warships crossed the border on Friday. ” median line “ of the Taiwan Strait, which separates the island from mainland China during the gigantic maneuvers organized by Beijing. “(We) condemn the communist army which deliberately crossed the median line”, the Ministry of Defense said in a statement. In addition, in Pingtan, a Chinese island located not far from the maneuvers in progress, AFP journalists saw a fighter plane in the sky at midday on Friday.
The maneuvers encroach on some of the busiest shipping lanes on the planet, through which essential electronic equipment from factories in East Asia is shipped to global markets. The Taiwan Maritime and Port Bureau has warned ships passing through this area and several international airlines have told AFP that they are diverting their flights to avoid the airspace around the island.
” An excuse “
Taiwan denounced the Chinese military response on Friday: ” We did not expect our malevolent neighbor to flaunt his might on our doorstep, and arbitrarily endanger the world’s busiest waterways with his military exercises.”Taiwanese Prime Minister Su Tseng-chang told reporters.
For their part, the United States sees in China’s reaction to the visit of the American politician ” a pretext to increase its provocative military operations in and around the Taiwan Strait”, according to White House spokesman for strategic matters, John Kirby. The tensions ” can go down very easily if the Chinese stop these very aggressive military exercises”, he added. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Beijing had “chosen to overreact” and denounced “provocation” that represent “significant escalation” tensions in the eyes of the United States. Washington has warned that its aircraft carrier USS Reagan will continue to ” to watch “ around the island but postponed an intercontinental missile test to avoid aggravating the crisis.
The White House has also convened the Chinese ambassador to Washington on Friday. ” We have made it clear to the Ambassador that Beijing’s activities are a matter of concern for Taiwan, for us and for our partners around the world.”said John Kirby, referring to the concerns expressed by the major democracies gathered within the G7 and ASEAN, which brings together the main countries of Southeast Asia. ” We have made it clear once again, as we have done in private at the highest level and in public: nothing has changed in our One China policy”he added.
“We also let it be known that the United States is ready, whatever China chooses to do”he said. “We will not seek or want a crisis”he concluded. “But we will not be deterred from operating in the seas and skies of the Western Pacific in accordance with international law, as we have done for decades, defending Taiwan and a free and open Indo-Pacific.” — a term used in particular by the United States to designate the changing reality of alliances in the Asia-Pacific region.
Finally, Japan continues to watch military operations with concern. He expressed a formal diplomatic protest against Beijing, believing that five of the Chinese missiles fell inside its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). ” We call for the immediate cessation of military exercises”said Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.