China slams US "provocation" after warships transit Taiwan Strait

Beijing, China - The Chinese Foreign Ministry denounced the passage of two US Navy warships through the Taiwan Strait as a "provocation" aimed at "sabotaging regional peace and stability."

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian ordered Washington to observe the One China policy after US warships transited the Taiwan Strait.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian ordered Washington to observe the One China policy after US warships transited the Taiwan Strait.  © Greg BAKER / AFP

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said Washington must observe the One China policy, which is the position that there is only one Chinese government.

Taiwan has had an independent government since 1949, but China considers the democratic island part of its territory and opposes any form of official contacts between Taiwan and others.

On Sunday, the guided-missile cruisers USS Antietam and USS Chancellorsville made a "routine" mission through international waters, the US Navy's 7th Fleet said.

China threatens "resolute" crackdown if Covid protests are repeated
China China threatens "resolute" crackdown if Covid protests are repeated

"The ship's transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the United States' commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific. The United States military flies, sails, and operates anywhere international law allows," the statement said.

It was the first time the US military sent warships through the strategic waterway since US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan.

The brief visit, during which Pelosi pledged Washington's solidarity, drew the ire of the leadership in Beijing. In response, the Chinese military held large-scale maneuvers around the island.

There have been several subsequent US delegation trips to Taiwan, including visits led by Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey and Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb.

Cover photo: Greg BAKER / AFP

More on the topic China: