By Li Zhigang
LATE at night on August 2, Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi made a surreptitious visit to China’s Taiwan region in defiance of China’s stern representations. This act severely violates the One-China principle and maliciously infringes on China’s sovereignty. It has aroused strong indignation of the Chinese people and met widespread opposition from the international community.
The One-China principle is at the core of China-US relations
There is only one China in the world, Taiwan is an inalienable part of the Chinese territory, and the government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate government representing the whole of China. The One-China principle, since it was enshrined in the UN General Assembly Resolution 2758 in 1971, has become the universal consensus of the international community and the basic norm governing international relations. A total of 181 countries in the world have established diplomatic relations with China on the basis of this principle.
The One-China principle is the core essence of the three China-US joint communiques as well as the premise and foundation for the establishment and development of China-US diplomatic relations. In 1979, the US side made a crystal clear commitment to the One-China principle in the communiqué establishing diplomatic relations with China. Since Speaker Pelosi is the incumbent leader of the US Congress, her visit to and activities in Taiwan, in whatever form and for whatever reason, is a major political provocation to upgrade US official exchanges and substantive relations with Taiwan.
The US provocation over Taiwan will be met accordingly
The Taiwan Strait is facing a new round of tension and severe challenges, and the fundamental cause is the repeated moves by the Taiwan authorities and the US to change the status quo.
The Taiwan authorities have kept seeking US support for their independence agenda. They refuse to recognise the 1992 Consensus, go all out to push forward “de-sinicisation”, and promote “incremental independence”. The US, for its part, has been attempting to use Taiwan to contain China.
It constantly distorts, obscures and hollows out the One-China principle, and emboldens “Taiwan independence” separatist forces by stepping up its official exchanges with Taiwan, building up military ties and increasing arms sales to Taiwan. Some US politicians have become “troublemakers” in US-China relations, and the US has become the “biggest spoiler” of peace and stability in the region.
It is the irreversible trend of the times for China to realise the complete reunification of the motherland. No country, no forces and no individual should ever underestimate the firm resolve, strong will and great capability of the Chinese Government and people to defend state sovereignty and territorial integrity and to achieve national reunification and rejuvenation.
In the face of blatant provocations by the US side, the Chinese Foreign Ministry has solemnly stated China’s position, and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army has conducted military drills in six air and sea areas surrounding Taiwan island as countermeasures. We will continue to take all necessary measures to resolutely defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity. If the US side continues to go down the wrong path, it will end up paying a heavy price, and all the consequences arising from this will be borne by the US side and the “Taiwan independence” separatist forces.
The US trick for its selfish gain will only backfire
It should be noted that while the Taiwan issue is central to China’s core interests, it is only a pawn for the US to contain, though in vain, China’s development.
It is no secret that the US has been constantly fanning the flames and playing geopolitical tricks around the world. Especially since the end of the Cold War, there is not a single major warfare in the world that is not directly or indirectly related to the US; there is no persistent unrest in any region or country that is not masterminded by the US; and there is not a single warfare started by the US that is not about the dollar and American hegemony. The US is only too willing to pursue its selfish interest at the expense of others.
The recent crisis in Ukraine is a typical example of this. The US fanned the flame and made a fortune out of the crisis, which has seriously undermined international peace and stability, and crippled global economic recovery. And all the subsequent crises of food, energy, debt and inflation are left to the people of the world, especially people in African countries who have to bear the brunt of the dire situation. And now, when the US side breaks its promise on the Taiwan issue, it only proves itself once again to be untrustworthy and unreliable. Its act in bad faith on the Taiwan Question will only further bankrupt its national credibility.
It is particularly ridiculous that the US, while adding fuel to fire on China’s Taiwan region, warns China “not to aggravate regional tension”.
The world can see clearly its hypocritical nature and sinister intention. The US attempt to manipulate the Taiwan issue for its own selfish gain will only backfire and prove to be another shot in its own feet.
South Africa’s adherence to the One-China principle is highly appreciated
China is the world’s largest engine of economic growth, and East Asia is the driving force for global development, whose peace and stability is of great importance to the world.
The US side, by provoking confrontation on the Taiwan Question, is moving against the common aspiration of people for peace and development in the Asia-Pacific region. Countries in the Asia-Pacific region are also important trading partners of South Africa and other African countries. When the stability of key global supply chains is at stake due to regional tension started by the US, the interests of South Africa and African countries will also be affected.
As a comprehensive strategic partner of China, South Africa has long adhered to the One-China principle and firmly supported China’s position on the Taiwan issue, which China highly appreciates.
Recently, Ms Lindiwe Zulu, Chairperson for the ANC’s subcommittee on international relations and Minister of Social Development in South Africa, Mr Cedric Thomas Frolick, chairperson of the South African Parliament, General Rudzani Maphwanya, Chief of the South African National Defence Force, Mr Bamanye Matiwane, president of the South African Students Congress (Sasco) have all reaffirmed commitment to the One-China principle and expressed opposition to Pelosi’s gross interference in China’s internal affairs. These are proof that people have fair judgements and justice will always prevail.
No matter the Taiwan authorities’ scheme to seek US support for their independence agenda, or the US side’s attempt to use Taiwan to contain China, these moves are doomed to fail. The determination of the 1.4 billion Chinese people to achieve the reunification of the motherland is as solid as a rock, and the caprice of an individual politician cannot change the international consensus of One-China principle, nor can they change the historical trend that Taiwan must return to the motherland.
We hope and believe that South Africa will continue to adhere to the One-China principle, and give China, in responding to the US provocation, firm support on the Taiwan Question. We will work together to safeguard international justice and promote global development and stability for the benefit of our two peoples, and people of Africa.
* Li Zhigang is the Chargé d Affaires of the Chinese Embassy in South Africa.