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China slams Pompeo's upcoming Taiwan visit: 'Playing with fire'

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 22 February 2022, 13:23 IST
Mike Pompeo

China slams the ex-US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s upcoming Taiwan visit next month, China has stated that Taipei, seeking independence by asking US support, is "playing with fire."

China continues to hold Taiwan as a breakaway province even after decades of separate rule. It has often put out threats against the island and vowed to take over.

"Mike Pompeo has long been sanctioned by China for his anti-China remarks and actions. The Democratic Progressive Party authorities in Taiwan, in seeking independence by soliciting US support, is playing with fire and will end up being consumed by it," said Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin at a briefing on Monday.

Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday had stated that Mike Pompeo will visit Taiwan next week to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen.

Former US Secretary of State will be on a 4-day visit to Taiwan from March 2 to 5. During his time Pompeo and his wife will also meet Vice President Lai Ching-te and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu, and join banquets hosted by them, Focus Times reported.

Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs described the upcoming visit of Pompeo as an indication of Washington's strong bipartisan support for Taipei.

On 4th March, Mike Pompeo has been invited to give a speech by the government-affiliated Prospect Foundation, the ministry said.

The MOFA further said it welcomes the upcoming visit of Pompeo, who it called a long-term friend of the country who promoted closer Taipei-Washington relations during his tenure in the administration of President Donald Trump, Focus Times reported.

As secretary of state from April 2018 to January 2021, Pompeo facilitated US government approval of many arm sales to Taiwan, strengthened bilateral exchanges with the establishments of new platforms and agreements, and ended the State Department's restrictions on how U.S. officials interact with Taiwanese counterparts, the ministry said.

Mike Pompeo also openly supported Taiwan's freedom and democracy even after leaving the post of secretary of state, the ministry added.

(With ANI inputs)

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First published: 22 February 2022, 13:23 IST