China considering strong measures to contain Taiwan

Miranda GreerJan 02, 2017

Incoming US President Donald Trump has left open the possibility of meeting with Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen after he takes office, but analysts from across the straits believe Tsai is unlikely to take the risk.

Beijing has also been angered by a trip planned by Tsai in January to Latin America in which she will transit through Houston and San Francisco.

More details in Monday's Borneo Bulletin. The government will work to encourage private investors to participate, she said.

Days later, Trump further irked Beijing by questioning whether Washington should be bound by the one-China policy.

Relations between China and Taiwan have worsened since Tsai, who heads the ruling pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party, was elected president in January, even as she has pledged to maintain peace with China.

In 1979, the U.S. cut diplomatic ties with Taiwan, accepting that there is only one China, and that Taiwan is part of it. The act broke more than three decades of the protocol Washington had been following since it switched diplomatic recognition to Beijing from Taipei in 1979.

The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), a nonprofit that acts as the USA embassy to Taiwan, said that Tsai's stop in the US would be "private and unofficial".

The move is bound to anger China, which had urged the United States to block any stopover.

Referring to such recent actions, Tsai said Beijing has been "gradually returning to the old ways of dividing, suppressing, and even threatening and intimidating Taiwan".

"Hopefully we're going to have great relationships with many countries. and that includes China", Trump said late Saturday.

China considers Taiwan its territory and does not recognize the island's government.

China has ratcheted up efforts to diplomatically isolate Taiwan, intervening to prevent the island's participation in global forums and establishing diplomatic relations with former Taiwan allies Gambia and Sao Tome and Principe. Beijing regards the self-governing island as part of China and officials have raised concerns after Trump this month questioned a US policy that since 1979 has recognized Beijing as China's government and maintains only unofficial relations with Taiwan.

"Some things have happened between (Taiwan and China) or this region".

China also sailed a group of Chinese warships, led by its sole aircraft carrier, around the island in exercises it called routine.

China has claimed sovereignty over Taiwan since 1949, when Mao Zedong's Communist forces won the Chinese civil war and Chiang Kai-shek's nationalists fled to the island.

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