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China threatens to invade Taiwan if US warships visit

Marines of the People's Liberation Army (Navy) (PLA(N)) stand at attention as Commander, Pacific Fleet Rear Adm. Gary Roughead greets them following a demonstration of the brigade's capabilities. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Corporal J.J. Harper)
December 11, 2017

Tensions between China and Taiwan have been on the rise after a senior Chinese diplomat threatened Taiwan with invasion if a U.S. warship visited Taiwan, Reuters reported.

“The day that a U.S. Navy vessel arrives in Kaohsiung, is the day that our People’s Liberation Army unites Taiwan with military force,” Chinese diplomat Li Kexin said at a Chinese embassy event in Washington last week, Reuters reported.

China considers Taiwan to be a wayward province that they claim sovereignty over.

According to Reuters, the National Defense Authorization Act for the 2018 fiscal year authorized naval visits between Taiwan and the U.S.

Li Kexin said China would initiate its Anti-Secession Law, which would allow the country to use force to prevent Taiwan from seceding. The law was introduced in 2005, signaling that China could use force if Taiwan declared independence.

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Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the threat hurt the feelings of people in Taiwan and was not a sign of positive relations between Taiwan and China.

“These methods show a lack of knowledge about the real meaning of the democratic system and how a democratic society works,” the ministry said, according to Reuters.

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen wants to declare independence from China. However, she wants to maintain the peace between both countries.