Published: Sat, July 13, 2019

Taiwan President Arrives in US After Warning of Threat From Mainland China

Taiwan President Arrives in US After Warning of Threat From Mainland China

"In order to safeguard national interests, China will impose sanctions on U.S. enterprises participating in this sale of weapons to Taiwan", he said.

Taiwan has defended the proposed purchase of Dollars 2.2 billion in arms from the United States, following a Chinese announcement that it would sanction any American companies involved in the deal.

Taiwanese media broadcast footage of the clashes outside the Grand Hyatt, where Tsai is staying during her stopover.

Opponents of Tsai - many waving Chinese flags - chanted slogans and fought with supporters, while one man was seen being detained and handcuffed by police.

Taiwan doesn't have diplomatic ties with the USA, though Washington provides Taiwan, which split from China in a 1949 civil war, with military and other support.

"Taiwan will not succumb to intimidation", the Presidential Office said in a statement released as Tsai's visit began, without specifically mentioning China.

China views Taiwan as part of its territory and has vowed to one day seize it, by force if necessary.

And although Washington switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing in 1979, it has remained Taiwan's most powerful unofficial ally and biggest arms supplier.

It bristles at any countries that might lend Taiwan diplomatic support or legitimacy. The island nations are among the few countries that recognize Taiwan instead of China. "China relations, ultimately their actions will backfire", Wang said. "China trade war not despite our democracy, but rather, thanks to it", she argued, saying that Taiwan's democratic system makes it open to diverse ideas, giving it the flexibility to "break the mold when the mold no longer fits".

Unlike the last three American presidents, who were wary of angering Beijing, Mr Donald Trump has ramped up relations with Taiwan.

The US State Department has approved the possible sale to Taiwan of M1A2T Abrams tanks, Stinger missiles and related equipment at an estimated value of $2.8 billion, the Pentagon said on Monday (local time), despite Chinese criticism of the deal.

The event took place on the next-to-last day of Tsai's visit to NY that will span three days before heading to the Caribbean for state visits to four of Taiwan's diplomatic allies. "Any obstacles will only strengthen Taiwan's resolution to join the global community".

In a meeting with United Nations representatives of Taiwan's 17 diplomatic global allies Thursday, Tsai struck a defiant tone.

Tsai was yesterday scheduled to attend a business forum and is today to meet students before heading to the Caribbean.

After her U.S. trip, Tsai will visit Haiti, St Vincent and the Grenadines, St Lucia, and St Christopher and Nevis, in an attempt to shore up support for Taiwan.

Taiwan pledged a US$150 million development loan to Haiti, while Beijing reportedly offered the Dominican Republic investments and loans to the tune of US$3 billion.

China has poached five of Taipei's dwindling number of allies since Ms Tsai became President in 2016.

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