US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said on Saturday that the large Chinese military operations recently carried out near Taiwan looked like a "
", reiterating Washington's strong support for the island.
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In a speech largely devoted to a set of challenges launched by Beijing, Lloyd Austin added that the United States remains committed to supporting "
Taiwan's ability to defend itself
." Speaking at a national defense forum held at the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif., He further emphasized the "
real differences in both interests and values
" between Washington and China.
But it's the way we manage them that counts,
” he said. In recent months, the Chinese military has carried out a series of increasingly aggressive military sea and air operations near Taiwan, which China considers part of its territory. Some analysts have suggested that Beijing might test US President Joe Biden in his first year in office as well.
China, said Lloyd Austin, is the only power currently capable of using its "
economic, diplomatic, military and technological might to pose a lasting challenge to a stable and open international system
." For him, the Chinese leaders have "
more and more openly expressed their dissatisfaction with the dominant order and their desire to deprive the United States of its role as world leader
". But, said the Secretary of Defense again, "
we are not looking for confrontation or conflict (...) We are not looking for a new cold war or a world divided into rigid blocks
Faced with the Chinese challenge, he stressed, the United States will deepen its ties with friendly countries in the region, in particular through joint military maneuvers. "
And finally, we remain faithful to our one-China policy and to the commitments made (...) to support Taiwan's ability to defend itself while maintaining our ability to resist any use of force that would jeopardize the safety of the people of Taiwan,
”concluded Lloyd Austin.
Washington goes as far as possible in its ties with Taiwan, without treating the territory as a sovereign state.
This is called the “
” of the Americans who, initially loyal to Taiwan, finally established diplomatic relations in 1979 with the Chinese Communist power.
This doctrine made it possible to preserve the status quo.