If Pelosi Visits Taiwan, China May Demonstrate its Strength

Nancy Pelosi
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The US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is anticipated to visit Taiwan, and the White House has warned that China may retaliate with military provocations.

According to spokesperson John Kirby, this may involve conducting extensive air or naval operations, launching missiles close to Taiwan, or both.

On her visit of Asia, Mrs. Pelosi arrived in Malaysia on Tuesday.

She intends to go to Taipei on Tuesday night, according to US and Taiwanese media, although there has been no formal confirmation.

Taiwan is a self-governing island, but China claims it, seeing it as a province that broke away. Beijing has threatened that Mrs. Pelosi’s visit might have “severe repercussions.”

While the US maintains what it calls a “robust, unofficial relationship” with Taiwan, it has formal diplomatic relations with China and not Taiwan.

Responding to reporter questions on Tuesday, Taiwan’s premier Su Tseng-chang said the island “warmly welcomes” any foreign guests.

He added Taiwan “would make the most appropriate arrangements” for any visitors.

The visit has created a diplomatic headache for the White House. President Joe Biden has said the US military believes a Pelosi visit to Taiwan is “not a good idea right now”.

On Monday National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Mrs Pelosi “has the right to visit Taiwan” and “makes her own decisions”, adding that the White House respects the US Congress’s independence.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is next in line to become president after the vice president.

China’s foreign ministry stated on Tuesday that it had been in contact with the US over the high-ranking visit and hoped that Washington would be clear about the significance and sensitivity of this topic.

 

In the meantime, Taiwan’s defence ministry claimed it had a complete understanding of military actions nearby and was prepared to defend itself from any Chinese threats.

Both in the US Congress and among the American people, Taiwan enjoys broad support from both political parties. Additionally, Mrs. Pelosi, a prominent member of the Democratic Party, has long criticised the Chinese government loudly for its record on human rights. She has previously spoken with opposition figures who want democracy and gone to Tiananmen Square to remember the massacre victims from 1989.

On Sunday, the speaker flew to Singapore to kick off her tour in Asia. Her itinerary was made public, and it also included trips in Malaysia, South Korea, and Japan, but it omitted Taiwan.

Mrs. Pelosi had intended to travel to Taiwan in April, but she postponed the trip after discovering she had Covid-19.

She stated earlier this month that it was crucial for Americans to support Taiwan.

In the days to come, Mr. Kirby said, China may escalate by making “spurious legal assertions,” such as that the Taiwan Strait is not an international waterway.

Other indications, according to him, point to Beijing perhaps sending planes in that direction as part of a premeditated intrusion into Taiwan’s airspace.

Mr. Kirby cited the 1997 trip to Taiwan by Republican and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich as well as earlier this year’s visits to Taiwan by other US politicians.

She stated earlier this month that it was crucial for Americans to support Taiwan.

In the days to come, Mr. Kirby said, China may escalate by making “spurious legal assertions,” such as that the Taiwan Strait is not an international waterway.

Other indications, according to him, point to Beijing perhaps sending planes in that direction as part of a premeditated intrusion into Taiwan’s airspace.

Mr. Kirby cited the 1997 trip to Taiwan by Republican and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich as well as earlier this year’s visits to Taiwan by other US politicians.

“We are expecting for them to act appropriately and not participate in any further escalation in the event she decides to visit,” they should say.

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