White House National Security Adviser: Taiwan policy ‘unchanged’, US fears ‘new cold war’ with China

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This was stated by White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan at the Aspen Security Forum. US policy towards Taiwan remains “unchanged” and Washington is closely following developments in the disputed island nation.

“So the president said in Japan that our policy has not changed, that we have a policy of strategic ambiguity, and we do … As the president himself said, our policy has not changed,” Sullivan said.

National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan speaks at a press briefing at the White House on March 22, 2022 in Washington.

National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan speaks at a press briefing at the White House on March 22, 2022 in Washington.
(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Sullivan noted that the US remains wary of a rise any conflict with China to the point where it could “drift” into a new cold war.

“That’s how we tried to approach things,” he said. “I believe we have achieved our goals in terms of what we have laid out and two days ago is the 18-month point of this administration.

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“I think in the Pacific, in Europe, in the Middle Eastif we look at the global competition with China, I think we are well positioned to be able to fight it effectively.”

U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper speaks after being sworn in as President Trump watches from the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C. July 23, 2019.

U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper speaks after being sworn in as President Trump watches from the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C. July 23, 2019.
(Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images))

Earlier this week, China’s ambassador to the US, Qin Gang, spoke at the same forum and insisted that US support for the one-China policy included recognizing China’s ownership of Taiwan.

At an earlier session of the Aspen Security Forum, former Secretary of Defense Mark Esper acknowledged that China’s language outlining the One China policy spoke of “Chinese on both sides of the Strait,” but added that he thought “one China policy exhausted itself.”

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“Look, those two postulates are no longer true,” Esper countered. “Firstly, most people in Taiwan identify as Taiwanese, not Chinese, and secondly, they long ago gave up any ambition to return to the mainland and claim it.”

Chinese Ambassador to the United States Qin Gang makes a statement at an online symposium jointly held by the Chinese Embassy and Consulates General in the United States to commemorate the 110th anniversary of the 1911 Revolution, October 13, 2021 in Washington, DC.

Chinese Ambassador to the United States Qin Gang makes a statement at an online symposium jointly held by the Chinese Embassy and Consulates General in the United States to commemorate the 110th anniversary of the 1911 Revolution, October 13, 2021 in Washington, DC.
(Chen Mentong/China News Service via Getty Images)

“I think on top of that, the other part of it is clearly that China is violating the unwritten, maybe someone will say the unwritten rule, that is, of course, it is embodied in the Taiwan Relations Law, but they will not use coercion to determine the final status, if you will, of Taiwan,” he added, saying China has “improved its game” against Taiwan ‘forces’ negotiations in your favor.

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President Biden has repeatedly stressed that the US can support a united China while arguing that Taiwan is not part of China. Sullivan reiterated that when Biden said the US would support Taiwan, the president was not “speaking spontaneously” but actually laying out policy.