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Annalena Baerbock promises support for Taiwan in case of a possible attack by China

2022-08-01T17:58:50.075Z

Foreign Minister Baerbock told Beijing that Germany would not accept it if a large neighbor attacked a smaller one. At a UN conference, she accused Russia of “ruthless nuclear rhetoric”.



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Foreign Minister Baerbock at the UN conference in New York

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ANGELA WEISS / AFP

Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has warned China of an escalation of tensions with Taiwan and has backed Taiwan.

"We do not accept when international law is broken and a larger neighbor attacks its smaller neighbor in violation of international law - and that of course also applies to China," said Baerbock in New York.

In view of the "brutal Russian war of aggression" against Ukraine, it is important to make it clear that the international community does not accept such behavior.

Tensions had recently increased due to a possible visit to Taiwan by the Chair of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi.

The 82-year-old is currently on a trip to Asia and wants to visit Singapore, Malaysia, Japan and South Korea.

It remained unclear whether the top politician would also travel to Taiwan despite warnings from China.

Beijing had threatened the United States with consequences in this case.

A visit by the US's No. 3 would be the highest-ranking US visit to Taipei in decades.

Recently there had been rumors that Pelosi would travel to Taiwan on Tuesday.

Pelosi has long planned to visit Taiwan to take a stand against Beijing's threats (see a Correspondent's analysis of the current situation in the video here).

China's communist leadership regards Taiwan as part of the People's Republic and firmly rejects official contacts from other countries to Taipei.

Taiwan, on the other hand, has long considered itself independent.

Baerbock: Reduce risk of nuclear escalation

Against the background of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine, Baerbock worked to reduce the risk of nuclear escalation as much as possible.

Since the end of February, Russia has "repeatedly demonstrated ruthless nuclear rhetoric that calls into question everything the NPT has achieved in five decades," Baerbock said at the UN NPT Review Conference in New York.

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) has been in effect since 1970 and states that only the USA, Russia, China, France and Great Britain may possess nuclear weapons.

Around 200 countries have now joined.

The four other suspected nuclear powers India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea have either not joined the treaty or have withdrawn from it.

The agreement obliges the signatory states without nuclear weapons to renounce them.

Since Moscow is attacking the rule-based order, "it is now even more important to comply with the agreed norms and principles and to denounce violations," said Baerbock.

"Now is the time to be strong."

Russia's war of aggression brought "death and destruction" and marked a "turning point," said Baerbock.

By attacking a country that has given up nuclear weapons, Moscow is violating the agreements it signed up to in the Budapest Memorandum, the foreign minister said.

In the memorandum, Russia, the United States and Great Britain, among other things, promised Ukraine security guarantees if the country gave up all nuclear weapons on its own territory.

Baerbock accuses Russia of "ruthless nuclear rhetoric."

Russia has used "ruthless nuclear rhetoric" since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, Baerbock accused the superpower.

The Minister warned that the Non-Proliferation Treaty is not just a piece of paper, but embodies some of the fundamental basic values ​​of human interaction.

It is important to ensure that nuclear weapons are never used again.

To achieve this, the goal of nuclear disarmament must be pursued further.

However, this will only succeed if all nuclear powers take "credible steps".

“Russia is doing the opposite.

China's arsenals are growing.« Baerbock said that the goal could only be achieved through »honest dialogue«.

She is therefore committed to strengthening the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

"The commitment to nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear deterrence are not contradictory in these times," said Baerbock.

Germany does not have any nuclear weapons itself.

However, according to expert estimates, up to 20 US nuclear bombs are stationed at the Büchel air base in Rhineland-Palatinate, which are to be used by Bundeswehr fighter jets in an emergency.

Germany is participating in NATO's nuclear deterrent.

fek/kko/dpa/AFP

Source: spiegel

All news articles on 2022-08-01

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