US supports cross-strait detente: official


WASHINGTON — The United States welcomes a warming of cross-Taiwan Strait ties and will support President Ma Ying-jeou’s continued efforts to advance relations with China in his second term, a White House official said yesterday.

Washington also hopes for a continued strong partnership on U.S.-Taiwan relations, Deputy Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said, describing the relationship between the two sides as “positive” over the last several years.

“So I think we’re optimistic that we can continue to have a positive relationship with Taiwan in (Ma’s) second term,” Rhodes said in a press briefing on the G-8 and NATO summits, responding to a question on the outlook for U.S.-Taiwan relations during Ma’s second four-year term.

On arms sales to Taiwan, Rhodes said the U.S. government always assesses the matter based on its long-standing security commitment to Taiwan.

“I can’t say exactly when we’ll make a decision on any potential future arms sales, but we’ll certainly be looking at it in the context of what’s necessary for us to fulfill those commitments,” he said.