Powell: US opposes Taiwan independence moves
US Secretary of State Colin Powell said on Thursday that the United States does not support a movement toward independence on the part of Taiwan and the ultimate settlement of Taiwan issue has to be acceptable to both sides of the Taiwan Straits.
Addressing a joint press conference with his Chinese counterpart Li Zhaoxing after their working lunch in Washington, Powell said that he reaffirmed the US one-China policy to the Chinese foreign minister during their talks.
"I once again reaffirmed our one-China policy and the strength of the three communiques and also noted our obligations under the Taiwan Relations Act and reaffirmed what President Bush has said a number of times, that we do not support a movement toward independence on the part of Taiwan," the US official said.
However, Li indicated that the Taiwan Relations Act, which violates the Sino-US communique on establishment of full diplomatic relations, should not go above the US international commitments.
"The Chinese government and the people attach great importance to the reaffirmations made by the US president, the secretary, and US government on many occasions of the US continued adherence to the one-China policy, the observance of the three Sino-US joint communiques, and the opposition to Taiwan independence," the Chinese foreign minister said.
"At the same time, I wish to point out that in any country its domestic law should not go above its international commitments," Li affirmed. The Taiwan Relations Act were approved by the US Congress in 1979, weeks after Washington established diplomatic relations with Beijing.
Powell stressed that "there is no support in the United States for an independence movement in Taiwan, because that would be inconsistent with our obligations and our commitment to our one- China policy."
Asked whether the United States is going to ignore the voice and desire of a billion-plus people in the Chinese mainland as US officials often stated that the ultimate settlement of Taiwan issue has to be acceptable to the people in Taiwan, Powell responded with "of course not."
"It has to be acceptable to both sides (of the Taiwan Straits). That's what reconciliation is all about," Powell said, adding that "we strongly support our one-China policy, which has stood the test of time; it has benefited people in Taiwan, benefited people in the mainland, and it's benefited the international community and certainly benefited the United States."