China sanctions US defense companies over arms sales to Taiwan

As of: September 15, 2023 2:30 p.m

China is reacting decisively to arms sales by US defense companies to Taiwan and putting the companies on the sanctions list. This move further escalates tensions between Beijing and Washington.

China has imposed sanctions on two US defense companies over arms sales to Taiwan. According to its “Anti-Foreign Sanctions Law,” Beijing has decided to impose sanctions on Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said.

China is calling on the US to stop selling weapons to Taiwan. Otherwise, there will “inevitably be a decisive and strong reaction from China.”

The US Congress committed itself to supplying arms to the democratic island for its defense in the Taiwan Relations Act. So far, Washington has relied more on sales than direct military aid. However, in August the US approved direct military aid to Taiwan for the first time as part of an aid program for foreign governments.

China considers Taiwan to be part of the People’s Republic

According to Beijing, Lockheed Martin was the main contractor in the August 24 sale of US weapons to Taiwan. Northrop Grumman was also involved in many arms sales, the Foreign Office spokeswoman explained the sanctions against the company.

China considers Taiwan to be part of the People’s Republic and has repeatedly threatened to invade Taiwan in the past. Democratic Taiwan, with around 24 million inhabitants, has had an independent government since 1949. Most recently, Taiwan registered numerous Chinese naval ships off its coast and military aircraft entering its air surveillance zone almost daily.

Beijing warns the USA of severe consequences

“We call on the United States to abide by the One China principle and the provisions of the three joint communiqués of China and the United States and to stop arms sales to Taiwan,” Mao Ning said.

Military agreements between the USA and Taiwan must be ended and the arming of Taiwan must be stopped. “Otherwise, the US will inevitably face a strong and resolute response from China.”

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