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Beijing demands United States halt biggest arms sale to Taiwan

‘Don’t play with fire’: China warns US over Taiwan arms deal

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China’s top diplomat Wang Yi warned the United States that it should “not play with fire”. He expressed his anger on US arms sales to Taiwan and said that it not only harmed China’s sovereignty but also its national security.

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On Monday, the Pentagon had said the US State Department had approved the sale of the weapons requested by Taiwan, including 108 General Dynamics Corp M1A2T Abrams tanks and 250 Stinger missiles, which are manufactured by Raytheon.

China has now said it would impose sanctions on US firms involved in a deal to sell $2.2-billion worth of tanks, missiles and related equipment to Taiwan. Beijing, a major U.S. security rival has demanded the deal be revoked.

China’s latest statement came as Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen was in New York en route to visit four Caribbean allies, a trip that has also incensed China. China deems Taiwan a wayward province and has never renounced the use of force to bring the island under its control.

China’s spokesman, Geng Shuang, also called the sale a serious violation of the “one-China” principle, under which the United States officially recognizes Beijing and not Taipei.

China’s spokesman, Geng Shuang said, “To safeguard our national interests, China will impose sanctions on the U.S. enterprises involved in the above-mentioned arms sales to Taiwan.”

He also called the sale a serious violation of the “one-China” principle, under which the United States officially recognizes Beijing and not Taipei.

The State Department declined to comment and the US firms involved in the Taiwan arms deal did not immediately respond.

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