Reported plans for the US House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, to visit Taiwan could spark one of the most perilous moments in cross-strait relations for decades, analysts have warned.
Pelosi’s visit has not been confirmed but there is speculation it could occur in the coming weeks. She would be the highest-ranked US official to visit since Newt Gingrich in 1997.
China has warned that a visit by Pelosi would have “consequences”.
“I think the Chinese have to do more than they did in 1997 – Xi Jinping can’t be seen as weak on this,” said Bonnie S Glaser, director of the Asia programme at the German Marshall Fund thinktank. “It’s a very dangerous moment. I think few people actually realise how dangerous this is.” [Continue reading…]
Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has invited a small group of lawmakers on her official trip to Taiwan, including the top Democrat and Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, told NBC News on Wednesday.
McCaul, the ranking member on the foreign affairs panel, said both he and Chairman Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., have been invited by the speaker on an upcoming trip to the self-ruling island that China sees as under its control.
McCaul’s comments are the first on-the-record remarks confirming Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan. [Continue reading…]
Nancy Pelosi hasn’t said if she’s going to Taiwan, but if she does she’d be entering one of the world’s hottest and most contentious spots. While U.S. officials say they have little fear that Beijing would attack the U.S. House speaker’s plane, they are aware that a mishap, misstep or misunderstanding could endanger her safety. So the Pentagon is developing plans for any contingency.
Officials told The Associated Press that if Pelosi goes to Taiwan — still an uncertainty — the military would increase its movement of forces and assets in the Indo-Pacific region. They declined to provide details, but said that fighter jets, ships, surveillance assets and other military systems would likely be used to provide overlapping rings of protection for her flight to Taiwan and any time on the ground there. [Continue reading…]
The Wall Street Journal reports:
President Biden will speak Thursday with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, a U.S. official said, amid new tension over Taiwan, the war in Ukraine and a decision over whether to remove some Trump-era tariffs.
Separately, National Security Council coordinator for strategic communications John Kirby said Tuesday there would be a “robust agenda” during the call, including about Taiwan and the war in Ukraine. When they speak, it will be the fifth call between the two leaders, he said.
The two men last spoke in March, when Mr. Biden warned Mr. Xi that China and its relations with the U.S. would suffer consequences if Beijing provided substantive assistance to Russia in its military assault on Ukraine. [Continue reading…]