The State Department announced on Thursday that the US administration under President Joe Biden has given its approval for two potential arms sales to Taiwan. These sales, totaling $440 million, are aimed at bolstering Taiwan’s defense capabilities in light of the ongoing tensions with China.
The initial sale, which is worth around $332 million, involves the purchase of 30mm ammunition and associated equipment. The second sale is worth $108 million and includes spare and repair parts for vehicles and weapons. These parts are being sold to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office, which is Taiwan’s diplomatic outpost in the United States.
According to the State Department, they mentioned that the proposed sales would benefit the United States in terms of national, economic, and security interests. This is because it would help Taiwan in upgrading its military forces and ensuring they have a strong defensive capability.
The United States has a long-standing practice of supplying weapons to Taiwan under the Taiwan Relations Act. This has received support from both political parties. China is firmly against any military involvement between the US and Taiwan because it considers Taiwan to be a part of its own territory.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson expressed anger and urged the US to follow the “one China principle” and stop selling weapons to Taiwan. They believe that this action undermines peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.
The Defense Ministry of Taiwan thanked the US for considering the sales, mentioning that China’s military expansion and oppressive actions in the region are a major concern. The ministry thinks that selling arms will make Taiwan better able to defend itself and respond to China’s military threat.