China seeks US prudence on Taiwan to prevent Cold War

Beijing, Sep 22 (EFE).- The United States must be prudent in dealing with the Taiwan issue to prevent a new Cold War, China said on Thursday.

The remarks from the Chinese foreign ministry came in response to President Joe Biden’s comments that he was not seeking a conflict with Beijing.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters that China was stable in its policy towards the US.

“But it is the United States that has to handle the Taiwan issue with prudence,” Zhao said.

He said Beijing hoped the US would work with China to achieve peaceful coexistence and maintain mutually beneficial cooperation despite their different social systems and history.

On Tuesday, Biden told the United Nations General Assembly that the US would conduct “itself as a reasonable leader” amid shifting geopolitical trends and competition with China.

“We do not seek conflict. We do not seek a Cold War. We do not ask any nation to choose between the United States or any other partner,” Biden said.

He said the US sought “to uphold peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits.”

Taiwan’s sovereignty remains the source of conflict between the US and China.

“We remain committed to our one-China policy, which has helped prevent conflict for four decades,” Biden said

“We continue to oppose unilateral changes in the status quo by either side.”

China claims sovereignty over the self-governing island and has often threatened to use force to reintegrate the “rebellious province.”

The softening of Biden’s tone towards China and on the issue of Taiwan followed his warning that he would send the US military to defend the island if Beijing attacked it.

“Yes, if in fact there was an unprecedented attack,” Biden told CBS news network in response to a question if US forces would defend the island.

The White House watered down the statement and said the US policy towards the one-China principle and Taiwan had not changed.

The tension between the US and China over Taiwan escalated with Beijing expanding its military drills near the island after a controversial visit by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in August.

The US has long maintained a strategically ambiguous policy toward Taiwan.

The island was the refuge of the Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang) forces after losing the civil war with the Communists, who, since then, have claimed sovereignty over the territory.

In 1979, Washington broke its official diplomatic ties with Taipei in favor of Beijing.

However, the American Institute in Taiwan operates as a de facto embassy in Taipei.

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