Beijing releases its “white paper” when London sees red

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Did you miss the latest events regarding the renewed tension around Taiwan? Do not panic, 20 minutes takes stock every day, since the visit of Nancy Pelosi, American number three and president of the House of Representatives, which has largely cooled relations between China and the United States. Who did what ? Who said what? Where are we ? The answer below:

The fact of the day

The Taiwan Affairs Bureau, a Chinese government agency, released a “white paper” on Wednesday detailing how Beijing plans to take over the island, the first on the subject since 2000. (of cooperation) in order to achieve peaceful reunification,” the document states. China thus proposes to strengthen cultural ties, in terms of social security, health or even to encourage better economic “integration” via “preferential policies” in particular.

“But we will leave no room for maneuver for separatist actions aimed at a pseudo-independence of Taiwan, and that, in any form whatsoever”, also promises Beijing. “We do not promise to renounce the use of force”, adds China, before qualifying its statement: “force would be used as a last resort, in the event of compelling circumstances. »

“With a strong homeland on which to rely, Taiwanese compatriots will be stronger, more confident, more secure and will be more respected on the international scene”, still assures the text. It should be noted that China considers as “separatist” the party of the Taiwanese president, but also any person publicly militant for independence or for the dilution of the Chinese identity of the Taiwanese.

The number of the day

100,000. This is the number of people who populate Kinmen, located just 3.2 km from China. This island controlled by Taipei, on the front line against China, has attracted particular attention since August 4 and the renewed tension between China, the United States and Taiwan. Indeed, if the Chinese forces crossed the Taiwan Strait, this buffer island would certainly be their first target.

sentence of the day

The UK urges China to resolve any disputes by peaceful means, without the threat or use of force or coercion. »

These are the words of British Foreign Minister Liz Truss who summoned Zheng Zeguang, China’s ambassador to the UK, to the Foreign Office over Beijing’s “aggressive and far-reaching escalation” against Taiwan. “I have asked officials to summon the Chinese ambassador to explain his country’s actions,” added Liz Truss.

The trend of the day

Faced with an increasingly offensive Xi Jinping on the international scene, fears that Beijing will decide to launch a military offensive against Taiwan continue to grow. China considers this autonomous island as an integral part of its territory and intends since Wednesday to take it back by force if necessary.

But a full-scale invasion would not be the only option China is considering to force Taiwan into submission. It could use various means to achieve its unification objective, including imposing a “customs quarantine”. Beijing could thus take effective control of Taiwan’s air and sea borders by screening incoming ships and planes, allowing “innocuous” traffic to circulate and diverting “suspicious” ships to Chinese ports.

“The Chinese government would let the people of Taiwan manage their own affairs on the island, at least for a while, with China showing that it controls who comes (and perhaps who leaves),” according to a report by the Council on Foreign Relations dating from 2021. Under such a scenario, imports of food and energy would still be allowed, as would passenger traffic. “The goal is to coerce Taiwan into accepting a loss of control, cutting it off, at least, from transfers of military equipment and associated foreign experts,” the report said.

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