US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has called on UN members to support Taiwan's participation in the work of the United Nations.
Beijing strictly rejects this.
There is no solution in sight.
Washington / Beijing / Munich - The US is serious about its support for Taiwan in world politics. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on members of the United Nations on Tuesday to "support a robust, meaningful participation by Taiwan in the UN system and in the international community." Taiwan is a "democratic success story", an important international player and a "valued partner and trusted friend". There had never been such a public advocacy of the United States for the island at the UN since Taiwan's departure from the world organization in 1971.
China's Foreign Office spokesman Zhao Lijian reacted promptly on Wednesday: The US did not stop making mistakes on the Taiwan question.
"And if the US continues to play the 'Taiwan card', it will inevitably be a huge disruption to Sino-US relations."
Advance for Taiwan participation in the UN: What makes Taipei happy, angered Beijing
The relationship between the two great powers is strained anyway. There is a dispute in trade policy, in the Indo-Pacific, over digitization. On the Taiwan question, everyone seemed to have come to terms with the status quo: As Beijing demanded, the US officially recognized the “one-China policy”, according to which there is only one single China. Meanwhile, Beijing tolerates arms deliveries and Washington's indirect contacts with Taipei. Now both sides seem to be shaking the balance. China is increasing observation flights in the airspace near Taiwan and is sending ships into nearby waters more often. The United States, under ex-President Donald Trump, agreed to supply offensive weapons for the first time in 2020. There are reports that US soldiers are training the Taiwanese military. Last week, President Joe Biden stated on US television thathe will support Taiwan militarily in an attack by China.
So far, these are only intensified forms of a well-known narrative.
The fact that the US is now pushing Taiwan's participation in the UN is new and of a different quality.
Foreign policy officials from Taiwan and the US met last Friday to explore options.
Just a few days later, Blinken called on the international community to include Taiwan in the UN, almost a political shift.
However, it is still rejected in official Washington.
Taiwan's participation in the UN: A compromise is impossible
Blinken emphasized that it was in line with the one-China policy of the USA to allow Taiwan to participate in international bodies.
Taiwan's expulsion undermines the vital work of the United Nations and its affiliates.
Blinken cited as examples that Taiwan was not represented in the International Civil Aviation Organization or the World Health Organization (WHO).
A solution is not in sight, however, because the matter is clear to Beijing: Taiwan is not a state and therefore cannot act as a member of a community of states.
It is unclear what possibilities the US wants to explore with other allies to make the impossible possible.
Taipei welcomed Blinking's advance nonetheless.
Taiwan: conflict with China would be global "catastrophe"
Taiwan itself has issued an urgent warning against further escalation in the face of mounting tensions with China. A military conflict between the two countries would be "a catastrophe - not only for Taiwan but also for China and the rest of the world," Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu told the
. China could try to create a crisis to divert attention from domestic issues. Because economic growth in the People's Republic has slowed, the western sanctions are also having an effect and there are energy bottlenecks, said Wu. "Such situations could create an environment for an authoritarian leader to consider external measures to divert attention domestically," he said. "The danger is and it is getting bigger," he added.
Wu was in the Slovak capital, Bratislava, on Tuesday to attend an event organized by the Globsec Institute. China protested against Wu's European trip, who had previously also visited the Czech Republic with a larger delegation. "We are convinced that we will not go wrong if we further develop our cooperation with Taiwan," said the chairman of the Czech Senate, Milos Vystrcil, of the
according to Monday.
Such trips were unthinkable until recently.
But recently, Taiwan's support also grew in Europe.
Lithuania allowed the opening of a "Taiwan Representation" in Vilnius and risked the wrath of China for doing so.
Last week the EU Parliament also spoke out in favor of stronger cooperation and an investment agreement with Taiwan.
(ck / with material from AFP and dpa)