China would attack Taiwan if there is no other way of stopping it from becoming independent, Chinese General Li Zuocheng (李作成) said yesterday.
Speaking at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People on the 15th anniversary of China’s “Anti-Secession” Law, Li, who is chief of the Joint Staff Department of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Central Military Commission, left the door open to using force.
The 2005 law is China’s legislative basis for military action against Taiwan.
“If the possibility for peaceful reunification is lost, the people’s armed forces will, with the whole nation, including the people of Taiwan, take all necessary steps to resolutely smash any separatist plots or actions,” Li said.
“We do not promise to abandon the use of force and reserve the option to take all necessary measures to stabilize and control the situation in the Taiwan Strait,” he said.
Li is one of China’s few senior officers with combat experience, having taken part in China’s ill-fated invasion of Vietnam in 1979.
Chinese National People’s Congress Standing Committee Chairman Li Zhanshu (栗戰書) told the same event that non-peaceful means were an option of last resort.
“As long as there is a slightest chance of a peaceful resolution, we will put in 100 times the effort,” Li Zhanshu said.
However, “we warn Taiwan’s pro-independence and separatist forces sternly, the path of Taiwan independence leads to a dead end; any challenge to this law will be severely punished,” he said.
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