China’s government warned on Tuesday that if U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan, she would face “forceful measures” according to the Financial Times.

Pelosi and her group will also visit Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, and Singapore, as well as spend time in Hawaii at the headquarters of the United States Indo-Pacific Command, according to sources familiar with the situation.

Her office and the US State Department did not immediately reply to a request for comment from Reuters. The Foreign Ministry of Taiwan said that it has “not received relevant information” on any visit.

After testing positive for COVID-19, the Democratic leader’s visit to Taiwan was postponed from April. At the time, China said that such a visit would have a negative impact on Sino-American ties. 

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian stated in Beijing that any visit by Pelosi would “seriously undermine China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity”

“If the US side persists in its current course,” he warned, “China will undoubtedly take resolute and forceful measures to firmly defend its national sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

“The United States must be fully responsible for all the consequences caused by this.”

China is putting increasing pressure on Taiwan, which it believes to be its own territory. The issue is a perennial source of friction in relations between Beijing and Washington.

Taiwan, on the other hand, has been encouraged by the Biden administration’s sustained backing, which has frequently stated its “rock-solid” commitment to the island.

Pelosi, a long-time opponent of China, met Taiwan Vice President William Lai online in January as he returned from a trip to the United States and Honduras. 

According to three individuals familiar with the incident, the White House raised worry about the travel.

According to two sources, there was disagreement inside the US government on whether Pelosi should visit Taiwan.

Some officials felt it was easier to explain a visit in April since it was immediately after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began, according to the report.

This month, China moved fighters beyond the Taiwan Strait’s middle line, which Taiwan labeled as a provocation. U.S. Senator Rick Scott, a senior Republican and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, was in Taipei at the time of the event. 

The announcement of Pelosi’s August travel came as China requested the US on Monday to stop a proposed $108 million transfer of military technical support to Taiwan.

Source: Reuters

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