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China angered as US Senate passes bill to promote close ties with Taiwan

Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said that while some of the new bill's provisions are not legally binding, it "seriously violates" the One China principle

AFP | PTI  |  Beijing 


lodged an official protest with the today, saying it was "strongly dissatisfied" after the US Senate passed a bill promoting relations with self-governing

The US Senate passed the Travel Act, intended to encourage visits between the and "at all levels", by unanimous consent on Wednesday, following its approval in the in January.

The bill adds that it should be US policy for high-level Taiwanese officials to enter the United States, meet with US officials and conduct business in the country.

Donald Trump's signature is now all that is needed for the bill to become law -- something that is not likely to be an obstacle, given that the bill was passed unanimously.

cut formal diplomatic ties with Taiwan in 1979, recognising the Communist mainland rulers in as the sole government of "One "

Chinese said that while some of the new bill's provisions are not legally binding, it "seriously violates" the One principle.

"China is strongly dissatisfied and firmly opposes it," Hua told a regular news briefing, adding that had made "solemn representations" to the US -- a diplomatic protest.

The United States, she said, should stop official exchanges with Taiwan and handle Taiwan issues "prudently and properly" to avoid "damaging Sino-US relations".

Under the terms of the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act, maintains an ambiguous approach to the island, maintaining trade relations and selling weapons.

Trump sparked protest from China shortly after his election in 2016 by accepting a phone call from Taiwan's Tsai Ing-wen, an action seen as breaking the protocol of the One China policy.

He made amends by vowing to uphold the One China policy shortly before Chinese Xi Jinping's visit to his Mar-a-Lago resort -- but infuriated again last summer by approving a USD 1.3 billion arms sale to Taiwan.

First Published: Thu, March 01 2018. 17:15 IST