China warned Taiwanese separatists through its state media Friday to prepare for further military drills amid increased calls for full independence, warning that the U.S. “cannot protect them.”
An editorial in the state propaganda outlet Global Times warns that if “Taiwan independence forces continue to wantonly take rash actions, the PLA will take further steps.”
“The live-fire exercises in the Taiwan Straits and the flights around Taiwan conducted by the PLA to specifically target Taiwan independence forces in recent days have shocked the island,” the editorial reads. “Still, some separatists attempted to embolden themselves by hyping their U.S. support.”
The editorial goes on to claim that the independence forces should “abandon their dream” of protection from the United States, as Washington continues to sell weapons and pass legislation that allows high-level diplomatic engagement between American and Taiwanese officials as well as an end to all travel restrictions.
“The Taiwan independence forces had better abandon their dream that the U.S. can protect them,” it continues. “Military competition between the mainland and the U.S. in the West Pacific is not all about Taiwan.”
Despite being administered by an independent, democratically-elected government, growing calls for full Taiwanese independence have angered authorities in Beijing, who continue to respond with military exercises. China considered Taiwan a rogue province, not a sovereign state.
“The mounting military pressure against Taiwan independence forces is a response to the escalation of their separatist activities,” it continues. “The Democratic Progressive Party is keen to woo the U.S. to get more involved in the Taiwan question. As a result, the PLA will build up its preparations for military conflicts.”
Last week, the PLA’s air force released a propaganda video Thursday showing bomber aircraft patrolling the island as another warning for the country’s democratic government to toe the line with Beijing.
The warnings come amid growing tension between Beijing, Taiwan, and the United States over efforts to declare full independence. China maintains that Taiwan is part of sacred its territory and viewing it solely as a breakaway province that will eventually return under their control.
In recent weeks, Chinese officials have warned that the passing of the Taiwan Travel Act will cause “serious disturbances to Sino-U.S. relations and the situation in the Taiwan Strait,” while President Xi Jinping has declared that China will “not give up a single inch of land” to separatist movements.
“These separatist actions will be met with the condemnation of the people an the punishment of history,” he said to rapturous applause in front of the National People’s Congress. “Not a single inch of our land will be, and can be, ceded from China.”