US National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley warned China and Taiwan to “respect the status quo” and avoid any unilateral actions that could affect the other side.
Answering questions following a major farewell speech in Washington on Wednesday, Hadley addressed the China-Taiwan issue in more extensive terms than he has done before in public.
He said the framework of US President George W. Bush’s policies with respect to China and Taiwan had been based on keeping the “status quo” in place while “at the same time making very clear to China that we would carry out our obligations under the Taiwan Relations Act to make sure that Taiwan had the capacity to provide for its own defense.”
“Bush has tried to have a course that basically respects the ‘one China’ policy ... and the three communiques, which are the bulwark of our policy with respect to China, but also to make very clear that both sides, China and Taiwan, need to respect the status quo and there needs to be no unilateral actions by either side,” he said.
“The President stood very firm with respect to those principles ... And I think that helped get through a difficult patch in the relations between China and Taiwan, and [has] helped encourage what is really a very hopeful turn in relations between China and Taiwan,” Hadley said.
As chief White House adviser on security issues, Hadley appeared to be going out of his way to stress — in a way that he has not done before — that under Bush the US was ready to make sure that Taiwan was able to defend itself in the case of an attack by China.
It is significant because much of the speech, which dealt with hotspots around the world, was directed at the incoming administration of president-elect Barack Obama.
“When President Bush approached Asia, he approached it not by starting first with our relations with China, but starting first with our relations with our traditional allies. A central feature of his Asia policy was to strengthen those alliances and to try and deal with a pretty long list of unresolved issues and irritants in those relationships,” Hadley said.
“So I think it is also very important for the new administration to think in the same way about how they are going to approach the issue of Asia more generally and to see our relations with China in that broader context,” he said.
“We have built a stronger relationship with China based on cooperation where we agree and candor where we disagree. Tensions over Taiwan have eased considerably. And we continue to press China on human rights and religious freedom,” Hadley said.
“The Asia-Pacific is a region of increasing importance to America’s security and economic well-being. President Bush has strengthened the institutional relationships that will allow the new president the better to advance our interests there,” he said.
Asked about studies by the think tank Freedom House that show free societies around the world are in retreat, Hadley said: “The advance of freedom is hard work and a long-term project. And I think it’s had its ups and downs. It may have declined over the last three years.”
The Lithuanian Ministry of National Defense recommended that consumers avoid buying Chinese mobile phones and advised people to throw away the ones they have now after a government report found the devices had built-in censorship capabilities. Flagship phones sold in Europe by China’s smartphone giant Xiaomi Corp (小米) have a built-in ability to detect and censor terms such as “Free Tibet,” “Long live Taiwan independence” or “democracy movement,” Lithuania’s state-run cybersecurity body said on Tuesday. The capability in Xiaomi’s Mi 10T 5G phone software had been turned off for the “European Union region,” but can be turned on remotely at any time,
CLOSE COOPERATION: A House of Representatives bill suggests inviting Taiwan’s navy to participate in the world’s largest international maritime military exercises The US House of Representatives on Thursday passed its annual defense policy bill, which includes provisions recommending that Taiwan be included in next year’s Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) and enhanced cooperation between Taiwan and the US National Guard. The House approved the US$777.9 billion National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 in a 316-113 vote. The 1,390-page bill includes three major provisions related to Taiwan under sections 1243, 1247 and 1248. Section 1248 recommends that the US invite Taiwan’s navy to participate in next year’s RIMPAC. Taiwan has never been invited to participate in the event, which is the world’s largest
‘FIGHT FOR VICTORY’: Eric Chu said his election victory would be the beginning of the DPP’s worries and that he would open all channels of communication with China Former New Taipei City mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) was yesterday elected Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairman in a four-way race that included outgoing chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣). Chu, 60, garnered 85,164 votes, or 45 percent of the 187,998 KMT members who cast ballots. Sun Yat-sen School president Chang Ya-chung (張亞中) trailed behind with 60,632 votes, followed by Chiang with 35,090 votes and former Changhua County commissioner Cho Po-yuan (卓伯源) with 5,133 votes. Voter turnout was 50.71 percent. This will be Chu’s second time heading the party. He was elected KMT chairman in an unopposed by-election in January 2015 and resigned in January
BACK IN BUSINESS: Amusement arcades, Internet cafes, KTVs and board game venues could also reopen next week if the COVID-19 situation does not worsen, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday eased some COVID-19 restrictions for public transportation, performances, exhibitions and sports event venues, effective immediately, as it also announced its conditions for reopening some banned recreational venues, including KTVs and amusement arcades, from Tuesday next week. As the local COVID-19 situation is under control, some ministries have modified the disease prevention guidelines for the businesses they supervise, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center. “Starting from this week, eating and drinking will be allowed in the stations of Taiwan High Speed Rail Corp and the Taiwan Railways Administration,” Chen