Kamala Harris rebukes China in major speech
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The US ships’ passage through the Taiwan Strait followed recent Chinese military exercises in the region. Last week, Chinese vessels held assault drills. The move by the US military comes as Vice President Kamala Harris concludes her Southeast Asia visit.
Chinese officials have described the passage as being a “provocative move”.
Reuters reported that the US ships involved were the Navy’s USS Kidd, an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, and the Coast Guard cutter Munro.
The US Navy has claimed that its ships sailed “through international waters in accordance with international law”.
The statement added: “The ships’ lawful transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the US commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.
“The United States military flies, sails and operates anywhere international law allows.”
Ms Harris had visited Singapore and Vietnam to strengthen US influence on its Asian allies.
The US has continued its support for Taiwan by providing the island democracy with 40 self-propelled howitzers.
This has caused China to denounce more “provocative acts” by the US.
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According to Reuters, Tan Kefei, a Chinese defence ministry spokesman said: “The US has frequently carried out similar provocative acts.
“These acts are of a very bad nature, fully showing that it is the biggest destroyer of peace and stability and the biggest cause of security risks in the Taiwan Strait.
“We firmly oppose and strongly condemn this.”
He added: “Taiwan is an inseparable part of China.
“The Taiwan issue is China’s internal affair and allows no external interference.
“We call on the US to recognise the situation, stop provocation and abide by the One China principle and the provisions of the three Sino-US joint communique.”
The One China principle is Beijing’s assertion that Taiwan and Hong Kong and Tibet are part of China and the possession of the politburo in Beijing.
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