Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan has ignited a diplomatic firestorm with China summoning the US envoy and threatening dire consequences.
New Delhi: Hours after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, China rolled out curbs on Taipei on import of fruits and fish from Taiwan and also halted shipments of sand.
Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan has ignited a diplomatic firestorm with China summoning the US envoy and threatening dire consequences. Later, talking to the media, Pelosi said the US supports status quo and does not want anything to happen to Taiwan by force. “We want Taiwan to always have freedom with security, we are not backing away from that,” Pelosi was quoted by a section of the media.
Speaking alongside Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen, Pelosi had said, “Now, more than ever, America’s solidarity with Taiwan is crucial, that’s the message we bring in today.”
Amid Pelosi’s visit, more than 20 Chinese fighter jets entered the air space of Taiwan. Beijing’s contention over Pelosi’s visit is that it claims that Taiwan is a part of its territory and is being ruled by Taipei illegally.
Meanwhile, the Customs Administration of China said it will suspend some citrus fruits and import of fish from Taiwan over alleged “repeated” detection of excessive pesticide residue and positive coronavirus tests on packages. The Commerce ministry in a separate statement said it will “suspend the export of natural sand to Taiwan” from Wednesday. The ministry did not cite any reason.
This is not the first time Beijing has stopped exports from Taiwan. Earlier in March 2021, China had banned pineapple imports from the island citing the discovery of pests. However, the move was widely seen as politically driven.
The Chinese authorities have also announced planned live-fire military drills encircling Taiwan, in a move Taipei’s defence ministry said threatened the island’s key ports and urban areas.