Cross-strait tensions expected to rise as Kelly Craft heads for Taiwan

New U.S. Ambassador Kelly Craft walks to the podium to address the press after attending her first Security Council meeting, at United Nations headquarters, Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

TAIPEI (The China Post/ANN) — China’s state-run media has called for retaliation after the Trump administration promised to lift restrictions on interactions with Taiwan officials just days before President-elect Joe Biden takes office.

The move is one of its biggest yet to reshape U.S. ties with Taiwan, according to Bloomberg, which quoted Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times, for arguing about teaching a “heavy lesson to the ‘Taiwan independence’ forces” and re-establishing “strategic leverage” in the Taiwan Strait.

“While Pompeo tries to cross Beijing’s redline on national sovereignty and territorial integrity, he should not expect that China will sit back and do nothing,” Hu said in a commentary published in the official Xinhua News Agency on Sunday.

China’s Foreign Ministry has condemned the planned trip this week by Kelly Craft, who will become the first U.S. ambassador to the United Nations to visit Taiwan since the Republic of China (Taiwan) left the global body in 1971.

Officials called her trip “a breach of the One-China principle” and accused U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo of “staging a final show of madness” to “sabotage China-U.S. relations.”

The U.S. guidelines on meetings with Taiwanese officials, which are updated periodically, were put in place after recognizing the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 1979 to distinguish interactions with Taiwan from those with official diplomatic partners.

According to Beijing, the “One China” principle states that Taiwan and China are part of the PRC. While Washington recognizes that the PRC’s government is the only legitimate government of China, it only acknowledges that the PRC claims Taiwan is a part of China. China has repeatedly said no other nations have the right to interfere in its internal affairs, including in Hong Kong.