TOKYO (AP) — President Joe Biden says the U.S. would intervene militarily if China were to invade Taiwan.
It was one of the most forceful presidential statements in support of self-governing in decades. Biden spoke at a news conference in Tokyo and said the burden to protect Taiwan was “even stronger” after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
"That's a commitment we made. Look, here's the situation, we agree to the One China policy — we signed on to it, all the intended agreements made from there, but the idea that it can be taken by force is just not appropriate. It would dislocate the entire region and be another action similar to what happened in Ukraine," Biden said Monday.
The White House quickly tried to downplay the comments.
“He reiterated our One China Policy and our commitment to peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait," a White House official reportedly said. "He also reiterated our commitment under the Taiwan Relations Act to provide Taiwan with the military means to defend itself.”
Despite the attempt to clarify Biden's comments, CNN reports that China still had sharp words for Biden.
"We urged the US side to earnestly follow the One China principle... be cautious in words and deeds on the Taiwan issue, and not send any wrong signal to pro-Taiwan independence and separatist forces — so it won't cause serious damage to the situation across the Taiwan Strait and China-US relations," a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement, according to CNN.