CEO Morning Brief

China's Foreign Minister Calls Taiwan's New President 'disgraceful'

Publish date: Wed, 22 May 2024, 11:39 AM
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TheEdge CEO Morning Brief

BEIJING (May 21): Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi called Taiwan’s newly-inaugurated President Lai Ching-te “disgraceful” on Tuesday, stepping up Beijing’s rhetoric just a day after he took office.

China, which claims Taiwan as its own territory, believes Lai to be a “separatist”, and has rebuffed his offers of talks.

China’s government has generally avoided directly naming Lai since he won election in January, unlike in the run-up to the vote where they regularly denounced him by name and said the election was a choice between war and peace.

Speaking at a foreign ministers meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Kazakhstan, Wang said Taiwan was the “core of core issues” for China, and independence activities the most destructive factor for peace in the Taiwan Strait.

“The ugly acts of Lai Ching-te and others who betray the nation and their ancestors is disgraceful,” China’s foreign ministry cited Wang as saying.

Nothing can stop China from achieving “reunification” and bringing Taiwan “back to the motherland”, he added.

“All Taiwan independence separatists will be nailed to the pillar of shame in history.”

Taiwan’s foreign ministry said China’s coercive practices would not sway the island.

“Political coercion and diplomatic suppression by the authoritarian Chinese government will never change Taiwan’s staunch democratic convictions,” it said.

Lai, like his predecessor Tsai Ing-wen, says only Taiwan’s people can decide their future, rejecting Beijing’s sovereignty claims.

China on Tuesday also admonished the US for sending its congratulations to Lai, after scolding South Korean and Japanese lawmakers for visiting Taiwan despite its strong opposition.

Source: TheEdge - 22 May 2024

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