US urged not to sell missiles to Taiwan

(China Daily)
Updated: 2007-03-05 06:44

China yesterday urged the United States not to send the wrong signal to Taiwan separatists by selling missiles to the island.

"The activities of Taiwan separatists pose a major threat to peace and stability in the Taiwan Straits," said State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan when meeting US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte,

He was responding to US Department of Defense plans to sell Taiwan more than 400 missiles worth $421 million.

The planned sale reportedly includes 218 AMRAAM medium range air-to-air missiles and 235 Maverick missiles.

The Foreign Ministry said earlier the sale would "seriously violate" previous commitments made by Washington to reduce arms sales to the island, and would be a "rude interference in China's internal affairs".

"China hopes that the United States can definitively keep its promise to work with the Chinese side together and fight and contain 'Taiwan independence'," ministry spokesman Qin Gang said.

Tang said he hoped the United States would keep its promise to safeguard the peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits as well as its relationship with China.

Negroponte said the US would firmly adhere to the one-China policy and observe the three China-US joint communiques.

Negroponte arrived in Beijing on Saturday, his first overseas visit since taking up his new position on February 27. He had earlier visited Japan and will also visit the Republic of Korea.

In meetings on Saturday with Vice-Foreign Ministers Yang Jiechi and Dai Bingguo, "the Chinese side also expressed that it is firmly opposed to the export and sale of weapons to Taiwan and the United States maintaining official relations with Taiwan", Qin said

Negroponte also met Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing yesterday.

Xinhua - Agencies

(China Daily 03/05/2007 page1)

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