U.S. official responds to China after warning on Taiwan
Washington, May 19 (CNA) United States National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan has urged China to dial down actions the U.S. thinks have caused tensions across the Taiwan Strait, in response to a reported warning issued by a Chinese official over U.S. support for Taiwan.
The U.S. is concerned about the ratcheting up of tensions across the Taiwan Strait and believes China is contributing to those tensions through provocative military activities around Taiwan and the strait, Sullivan said aboard Air Force One on Thursday en route to Asia.
Sullivan reiterated that U.S. policy toward Taiwan based on Washington's one-China policy, the three U.S.-China Joint Communiques, the Taiwan Relations Act and the Six Assurances has not changed.
The U.S. is committed to supporting peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and no unilateral changes to the status quo, Sullivan said, adding that it would help ease tensions if China "dialed down" its actions and activities.
Sullivan was responding to a question about his phone conversation on Wednesday with Yang Jiechi (楊潔篪), director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) Central Committee.
Yang told Sullivan that the U.S. has been adopting narratives and actions regarding Taiwan for a while that interfere with China's domestic politics and are harmful to China's interests, according to Xinhua News Agency and China Central Television (CCTV) on Thursday.
If the U.S. persisted in playing the "Taiwan card" and stayed on the wrong path, it could lead to a "dangerous" situation, Yang was cited as saying.
Yang also said China will take "firm actions" to safeguard its sovereignty and security interests and that the U.S. can count on China to keep its promise, according to the reports.
Specifically asked about Yang's remarks and the potentially "dangerous" situation, Sullivan said China has offered formulas like that for months, and he did not think there was anything particularly new in Yang's statement.
Sullivan would not reveal what he and Yang discussed on the topic of Taiwan, but he said Taiwan and several other issues, including North Korea's nuclear missile activities, were covered.
The phone call came one day before Sullivan set off with U.S. President Joe Biden on Biden's first presidential trip to Asia that will take him to South Korea and Japan.
Biden is expected to meet with South Korea President Yoon Suk-yeol and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and will attend a leaders' summit of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD), an alliance of the U.S., Japan, India and Australia, in Tokyo on May 24.
Biden's trip to Asia has been portrayed by media as being heavily focused on China and North Korea.
Citing Japanese government sources, Kyodo News on Tuesday reported that Kishida and Biden will highlight "peace and stability for Taiwan," and "share concerns that the Ukraine crisis could occur in East Asia."
An article published by Politico on Thursday said the QUAD summit of alliance leaders will be focused on countering China's rising economic, diplomatic and military clout in the Indo-Pacific region.
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