US announces $1.1bn arms sale to Taiwan, angering China
The Biden administration has announced a $1.1bn arms sale to Taiwan as US-China tensions escalate over its status.
The sale included $355m for Harpoon air-to-sea missiles and $85m for Sidewinder air-to-air missiles, the state department said.
The largest portion of the sale is a $655m logistics support package for Taiwan’s surveillance radar programme, which provides air defence warnings. Early warning air defence systems have become more important as China has stepped up military drills near Taiwan, which it regards as a renegade province.
The state department said the equipment was necessary for Taiwan to “maintain a sufficient self-defence capability”. The administration notified Congress of the sale after close of business on Friday.
The administration said the deals complied with the US one-China policy. It also urged Beijing “to cease its military, diplomatic and economic pressure against Taiwan and instead engage in meaningful dialogue with Taiwan”.
Liu Pengyu, spokesperson for the Chinese embassy in Washington, said the arms sale “severely jeopardises China-US relations and peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait. China will resolutely take legitimate and necessary countermeasures in light of the development of the situation”.
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