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China to punish US firms over Taiwan arms sale

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Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang. (xinhuanet/fmprc.gov.cn)

BEIJING (China Daily) – China said on Friday it will place sanctions on US companies involved in the latest planned military sale to Taiwan, which it said has impaired its sovereignty and national security.

The planned sale worth an estimated $2.2 billion seriously violates international law and basic norms of international relations, as well as the one-China principle and the stipulations of the three China-US joint communiques, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang in a statement.

China made the sanctions decision in order to safeguard its national interests, Geng said.

In a news conference in Beijing, Geng again urged the United States to call off the sale and cut military ties with Taiwan.

The US announced its State Department has approved the sale, the largest since US President Donald Trump took office in January 2017. The announcement came just days before the arrival of Taiwan leader Tsai Ing-wen to the US.

Tsai arrived in the US on Thursday, Reuters reported, and is spending four nights in the US – two on the first leg and two on the way back from a visit to four Caribbean countries.

State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said China is “gravely concerned” by Tsai’s transiting the US, and is firmly against any form of official contact between the US and Taiwan.

“Taiwan independence” separatist activities are doomed to fail, and no foreign intervention is allowed in the Taiwan question, which is purely China’s domestic affair, Wang said in a joint news conference in Budapest with Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto on Friday.

“No one and no force is able to obstruct the historical process of unification of the two sides across the Taiwan Straits,” Wang said, urging the US to honor its one-China promise and the stipulations of the three China-US joint communiques.

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