During a Friday speech regarding China's contributions to the global economy, Chinese Foreign Minster Qin Gang took the opportunity to reaffirm Beijing's position that it would "never back down" regarding Taiwan - a comment that was seen as a warning to the West.
"The Taiwan problem is at the core of China's core interests," Qin said as he wrapped up his speech. "We will never back down in the face of any act that undermines China's sovereignty and security. Those who play with fire on the question of Taiwan will burn themselves."
Qin also addressed accusations that Beijing is attempting to change the "status quo" regarding Taiwan. "It is not the Chinese mainland but the Taiwan independence separatist forces and a handful o countries attempting to disrupt the status quo," Qin added.
In early March, Qin issued a stronger warning directly to the U.S. when he said, "If the United States does not hit the brake, but continues to speed down the wrong path, no amount of guardrails can prevent derailing, and there surely will be conflict and confrontation."
Meanwhile, the West shows no indication of easing its support of Taiwan's security and sovereignty, according to Zerohedge, with EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell calling for the bloc's navies to begin patrolling the Taiwan Strait. On Sunday, Borrell published his opinion in the French weekly, Journal Du Dimanche.
Borrell wrote that Taiwan "concerns us economically, commercially and technologically," and encouraged European navies to patrol the Strait to ensure the island's protection. "That's why I call on European navies to patrol the Taiwan Strait to show Europe's commitment to freedom of navigation in this absolutely crucial area," Borrell concluded.
While Beijing has for years warned the West not to "play with fire" regarding Taiwan, the country's official policy is to have the self-ruled island peacefully reunify with China via political means, but views the United States' high-level contact with Taipei as interfering with that process.
The Global Times, which is a Chinese state-owned media outlet responded to Borrell's idea by saying, "If European warships still want to show off their might in the Pacific today, the result would only be an embarrassing failure."
"For the People's Liberation Army, which has powerful strength to defend its homeland, facing European warships that come to provoke and show off is not even worth raising an eyebrow. We advise them not to bring shame upon themselves."
While China continues to issue warnings to Washington and its Western allies, the West continues to disregard the warnings and sailed a guided-missile destroyer through the Taiwan Strait last week in response to large-scale Chinese military exercises that came as an expression of discontent regarding House Speaker Kevin McCarthy meeting with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen in California.
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