The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi began an Asian tour on Monday. After Singapore on Monday, he arrived on Tuesday July 2 in Malaysia, in Kuala Lumpur.
Tensions between the United States and China have recently escalated due to Mr.ME Pelosi in Taiwan, which has not yet been confirmed but will be announced in the coming days by the American media. Many Taiwanese and foreign media confirmed this trip on Monday, and the Financial Times even wrote that he will meet with Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen in Taipei on Wednesday.
Nancy Pelosi “have the right to visit Taiwan”defended Monday the spokesman of the White House for strategic issues, John Kirby. “There is no reason for Beijing to make this visit, without rejecting the long-standing American doctrine, a kind of crisis”he added, amid growing US-China tensions over the fate of Taiwan.
The Taiwanese Ministry of Defense said on Tuesday that it “determined, capable and confident” that he will protect the island from further threats from China. “We are carefully preparing several plans, and appropriate troops will be deployed to respond (…) to the threat of the enemy.assured the ministry in a press release.
China “will not sit idle”
China “It seems to be setting itself up to be a step in the coming days”continued Mr. Kirby: “may include military provocations such as firing missiles into the Taiwan Strait or around Taiwan”or “Significant aerial incursion” in the air defense identification zone of this island.
Some of these steps can be followed “the disturbing trend” from China to maneuver around the island, but others “be in another dimension”said Mr. Kirby, who said that China’s last missile launch in the Taiwan Strait was in the 1990s.
“If the Speaker of the House of Representatives (…) travel to Taiwan, China will definitely take firm and strong measures to protect its sovereignty and territorial integrity.”, warned earlier a spokesman for Chinese diplomacy, Zhao Lijian. The Chinese army “Not sitting idle”he pointed out.
The President of the House “will decide for himself whether or not to visit Taiwan”expressed his part of the American Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, from the United Nations, in New York, announcing that the American Congress has independent power, in the same way as the executive. “This decision is his”he added. According to Mr. Kirby, the United States “not afraid” and will continue their actions in the Asia-Pacific region anyway, adding that Washington’s position on Taiwan has not changed.
On Monday, to support their message, the Chinese military released a video on the Internet with a martial tone, showing soldiers shouting that they are ready for combat, fighters flying, paratroopers jumping from a plane or raining missiles that destroy different targets. “Any enemy who dares to attack us will be buried here”specified a very short text accompanying these images, which however did not clearly mention Taiwan or Nancy Pelosi.
Diplomacy known as “strategic ambiguity”
In this context, in Singapore, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong called on MME Pelosi to work on relations “stable” with Beijing. The Speaker of the House of Representatives announced on Sunday that he was driving “a Congressional delegation to the Indo-Pacific region to reaffirm America’s unwavering commitment to its allies and friends in the region”.
“In Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan, we will have high-level meetings to discuss how we can promote our common values and interests”, he added, without mentioning Taiwan in his itinerary. Delegations of American officials regularly travel to the island to express their support.
But the visit of MME Pelosi has no precedent since that of her predecessor Newt Gingrich in 1997. The United States has practiced on Taiwan diplomacy known as“strategic ambiguity”which consisted of recognizing only one Chinese government, that of Beijing, while continuing to provide decisive support to Taipei but refraining from saying whether or not they would defend this territory militarily in the event of an invasion.
US, Taiwanese and Chinese military exercises
A trip to Taiwan by MME Pelosi, a central figure in Joe Biden’s Democratic majority, in any case has a complicated task in American diplomacy, trying not to damage relations with China. Last week, in a telephone conversation with the American president, his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, called on the United States not to “don’t play with fire”.
On Monday, 4,000 American and Indonesian soldiers began large-scale military maneuvers, but Washington assured that they were not targeting any country. Taiwan’s military held its largest annual military exercise last week, which included mock attacks on China.
Last Saturday, in response, China organized a military exercise “live ammunition” in the Taiwan Strait – very close to the Chinese coast, however. In Taiwan, opinions are divided about the possibility of Mr.ME Pelosi, but the ruling party and opposition figures say the island does not need to resist Chinese pressure.