China has strongly criticized the United States for its decision to provide Taiwan with a $345 million military aid package. The White House’s announcement of the aid package prompted China’s Taiwan Affairs Office to issue a statement on Saturday, accusing the U.S. of turning the self-governing island into a “powder keg and ammunition depot.”
China claims Taiwan as its own territory, and the military aid package has been met with opposition from the Chinese government. Chen Binhua, a spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office, emphasized that China’s determination to resolve the Taiwan issue and reunify the motherland remains unwavering, regardless of Taiwan’s military purchases and U.S. support.
This military aid package has further escalated tensions in the already sensitive region, with China’s People’s Liberation Army increasing its military maneuvers around Taiwan in recent years. On Sunday, Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense reported tracking six Chinese navy ships near the island.
Taiwan, governed by the Democratic Progressive Party, has been actively acquiring weapons from the U.S. as a deterrence strategy against potential Chinese aggression. Unlike previous military purchases, the latest aid package draws weapons from current U.S. military stockpiles, allowing Taiwan to bolster its defenses without waiting for military production and sales.
The package, according to Defense Department spokesman Lt. Col. Martin Meiners, includes self-defense capabilities that will enhance Taiwan’s deterrence measures. The equipment encompasses critical defensive stockpiles, multi-domain awareness, anti-armor, and air defense capabilities.
While Taiwan has invested $19 billion in weaponry purchases, there have been delays in the delivery of some equipment. The ongoing tensions and military maneuvers reflect the historical split between China and Taiwan in 1949 during a civil war, with Taiwan remaining independent and never governed by China’s ruling Communist Party.