The U.S. Department of State quietly updated its fact sheet page about Taiwan on Saturday, adding back the statement “we do not support Taiwan independence” after initially removing it earlier this month, according to DW News reporter William Yang.
The department also added, “We oppose any unilateral changes to the status quo from either side” and “we expect cross-Strait differences to be resolved by peaceful means.”
“One spokesperson told Central News Agency that the move is to reflect the speech on Biden Administration’s #China’s strategy delivered by Secretary of State [Antony Blinken] last week,” Yang wrote on Twitter.
The speech delivered by Blinken on May 26 reportedly stressed that the U.S. opposes any change to the status quo, does not support Taiwan independence, and hopes to resolve cross-strait differences through peaceful means, per the CNA.
The latest edition of the page also maintains language surrounding aid and military support provided to Taiwan.
“Consistent with the Taiwan Relations Act, the United States makes available defense articles and services as necessary to enable Taiwan to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability,” both the May 5 and May 28 pages read.
However, the new fact sheet adds, “and maintains our capacity to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion that would jeopardize the security, or the social or economic system, of Taiwan.”
The news comes amid increasing restlessness over China’s posture toward the island, which it has claimed but never controlled since winning the Chinese Civil War in 1949.
On Thursday, China demanded that the U.S. halt trade talks with Taiwan — accusing Washington of jeopardizing peace in the region, The Associated Press reported.
Trade dialogues between the two countries “disrupt peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait,” said Zhao Lijian, China’s foreign ministry spokesman.
He also called on the U.S. to “stop negotiating agreements with Taiwan that have sovereign connotations and official nature.”