July 9, 2019

categories Pentagon

The US wants to sell Taiwan $ 2.2 billion in arms and military equipment. This will help the country to “face threats”. Sharp protest on the deal comes from China.

he US State Department has approved a $ 2.2 billion arms deal with Taiwan. Among other things, 108 M1A2T Abrams battle tanks and about 250 Stinger anti-aircraft missiles will be delivered, said the US Department of Defense. It would also sell machine guns, ammunition, armored vehicles and heavy vans.

Against “regional threats”

With the arms shipment, Taiwan could modernize its fleet of battle tanks, strengthen its defense capabilities, and better arm itself against “present and future regional threats,” the ministry said.

The armaments business also serves the security interests of the US: Taiwan is an important force for “political stability, military balance and economic progress in the region”.

China protests

Sharp protest came from China: The country called on the US to “immediately reverse the deal”. State Department spokesman Geng Shuang said the arms deal was a “grave violation of the one-China principle, gross interference in China’s internal affairs and undermines China’s sovereignty and security interests.” Beijing had already called on the US in June to give up the project so as not to burden its bilateral relations.

The Taiwan conflict has been going on for decades. After the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, government and military of the Republic of China – opponents of the Communists – withdrew to the island. The People’s Republic considers the country a renegade province and strives for its global isolation.

The US does not have official relations with Taiwan. But you are the main political supporter and largest arms supplier of the island state. The delivery of arms is adding to the already tense relations between the two largest economies due to the US trade war with China.

The US Congress could oppose the arms delivery within 30 days. This is considered unlikely.