Fri, Dec 09, 2016 - Page 1 News List

China paper urges boosting nuclear arms against Trump

AFP, BEIJING

China should “significantly” increase military spending and build more nuclear weapons as a response to US president-elect Donald Trump, an editorial in the nationalistic Global Times newspaper said yesterday.

China should “build more strategic nuclear arms and accelerate the deployment of the DF-41 intercontinental ballistic missile” to protect its interests, should Trump attempt to corner the country in an “unacceptable way,” it said.

“China’s military spending in 2017 should be augmented significantly,” it added in the print article run in both English and Chinese.

The paper is not part of the official state media, but has close ties to the Chinese Communist Party.

The US president-elect frequently savaged China on the campaign trail, even calling it the US’ “enemy” and pledging to stand up to a country he says views the US as a pushover.

The editorial follows a Twitter tirade by Trump earlier in the week blasting China’s trade and foreign policies, as well as a protocol-shattering decision to accept a congratulatory telephone call from President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).

In the editorial, the Global Times said: “We need to get better prepared militarily regarding the Taiwan question to ensure that those who advocate Taiwan’s independence will be punished and take precautions in case of US provocations in the South China Sea.”

On Wednesday, Trump selected Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who has close ties to Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) dating back to the mid-1980s, as ambassador to China — potentially welcome news for Beijing, which called him an “old friend” upon receiving reports of his nomination.

Nevertheless, the state-owned China Daily newspaper remained pessimistic about the future of relations with the US.

An editorial yesterday said that although China had thus far responded to Trump with “laudable” prudence, further provocations from the unpredictable politician would jeopardize Sino-US ties.

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