Chinese Foreign Minister invokes Anti-Secession Law for Taiwan reunification, warns US of “disruptive impact” on ties

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has warned that Washington’s pro-Taiwan approach would have a “disruptive impact” on US-China ties with a rare mention of invoking China’s Anti-Secession Law to seek reunification with Taiwan, in an escalation of rhetoric over the self-ruled island.

Wang said this during a meeting with former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger on Monday against the backdrop of US President Joe Biden’s latest assertion of defending Taiwan in case of a Chinese invasion of the island and the Taiwan Policy Act of 2022 clearing a US Senate panel last week allocating up to US$6.5 billion in military aid to Taiwan. Wang is in New York for the general debate of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly this week.

Beijing, which sees Taiwan as a breakaway province that must be reunited, by force if necessary – lodged an official protest with the US over Biden’s remarks. The White House later insisted that US policy on Taiwan had not changed. Taiwan strait was on the verge of a military escalation after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taipei in August, defying Beijing, which responded with unprecedented military drills around the island.

“Achieving peaceful reunification is our greatest wish, and we will do our best to achieve it. But it’s noteworthy that the more rampant “Taiwan independence” activities are, the less likely it is to resolve the Taiwan question peacefully,” Wang told Kissinger, according to a Chinese foreign ministry statement on Tuesday. If the Anti-Secession Law is violated, China will take resolute actions in accordance with the law to safeguard the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” he said.

The 2005 Anti-Secession Law provides a legal framework for Beijing to use non-peaceful means to guard against pro-independence forces in Taiwan and the island’s possible separation from mainland China. But Beijing has remained vague about when and under what circumstances the law would be invoked.

Henry Kissinger, Former US Secretary of State in Nixon Administration is well respected in China for his leading role in the normalization of US-China relations five decades ago and has since been instrumental in bilateral communications.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of President Richard Nixon’s visit to China coinciding with the heightened tensions in the relations ranging from Taiwan, Russia-Ukraine war, Tibet, trade issues, human rights issues, COVID-19 pandemic among others.

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