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China 'firmly' opposes US arms sale to Taiwan
by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) June 30, 2017

Taiwan approved for U.S. arms buy worth nearly $1.4 billion
Washington (UPI) Jun 30, 2017 - The U.S. State Department has approved seven foreign military sales deals with Taiwan for missiles, torpedoes and other equipment worth nearly $1.4 billion.

The proposed sale packages, which are expected to meet with disapproval with China, are the first arms deals for Taiwan -- which China regards as a rebellious province -- during the administration of President Donald Trump.

"This proposed sale is consistent with United States law and policy as expressed in Public Law 96-8," the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency, which manages the sales program, said in its notifications to Congress. "This proposed sale contributes to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security and defensive capability of the recipient, which has been and continues to be an important force for political stability, military balance, and economic progress in the region.

Taiwan has requested:

+ Operations and maintenance support for Taiwan's surveillance radar program. The $400 million deal includes contractor repair and return services, spare and repair parts, support and test equipment, logistical services and other items;

+ The upgrade of the AN/SLQ-32(V)3 Electronic Warfare Systems in support of four destroyers. This sale will include AN/SLQ-32(V)3 upgrade hardware, software, support equipment and parts, training, engineering and technical assistance. The total estimated program cost is $80 million;

+ The supply of MK 54 Lightweight Torpedo Conversion Kits. That includes torpedo support, torpedo spare parts, training, weapon system support, engineering and technical assistance for the upgrade and conversion of 168 MK-46 Mod 5 torpedoes. The cost is $175 million;

+ The purchase of 46 MK 48 Mod 6AT Heavyweight Torpedoes. Including containers, torpedo support and spare parts for $250 million;

+ The acquisition of 16 Standard Missile-2 Block IIIA All-Up Rounds, 47 MK 93 MOD 1 SM-2 Block IIIA Guidance Sections and five MK 45 MOD 14 SM-2 Block IIIA Target Detecting Devices. The request includes 17 MK 11 MOD 6 SM-2 Block IIIA Autopilot Battery Units and other equipment and services. The cost is $125 million;

+ The sale of 56 AGM-154C JSOW Air-to-Ground Missiles and support for $185.5 million.

Other sales requested by Taiwan include 56 HARM AGM-88B missiles and 10 AGM-88B Training HARMs for $147.5 million.

China on Friday condemned a $1.3 billion US arms sale to Taiwan and called on the United States to stop any weapons deal with the island, which Beijing considers a rebel province.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a press briefing that Beijing has lodged a formal protest with Washington and urged the US government to "uphold its solemn commitment to the One-China principle".

"Taiwan is an indispensable part of China's territory and we firmly oppose this arms sale to Taiwan," Lu said.

Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen said that peace could only be maintained by "actively improving our readiness and self-defence capabilities" at a graduation ceremony at Taiwan's National Defense University on Friday.

"Even at peace we should never forget that Taiwan remains under enormous threat. Peace shouldn't be taken for granted and national defence shouldn't be overlooked because of peace," she said.

"We will not even yield one step or one inch when it comes to facing threats and defending the territory," she added.

The comments come after China's embassy in the United States slammed the sale, saying it was a "wrong move" that would hurt relations between the two countries.

"The wrong move of the US side runs counter to the consensus reached by the two presidents in Mar-a-Lago and the positive development momentum of the China-US relationship," the embassy said.

"It will harm the mutual trust and cooperation between China and the US."

Chinese President Xi Jinping met with his US counterpart Donald Trump at the billionaire's luxury resort in Florida in April.

Relations between the two countries had appeared to improve since the talks, with Trump hailing an "outstanding" relationship with Xi.

But there are signs the honeymoon might be over with Trump criticising China for not doing enough to get North Korea to abandon its nuclear ambitions and the US slapping sanctions on a Chinese bank accused of laundering North Korean cash.

Taiwan offers cancer treatment to China dissident Liu
Taipei (AFP) June 28, 2017
Taiwan said Wednesday that it was willing to offer cancer-stricken Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo treatment after prison officials granted him medical parole, in a move likely to rile Beijing. The offer came a day after China rejected criticism over its treatment of Liu, as the United States urged Beijing to give the paroled activist freedom to move and choose his own doctors. Liu's lawye ... read more

Related Links
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