China says it would exert all efforts to unify Chinese Taipei (Taiwan) with the mainland peacefully, but it would not rule out the use of force against foreign meddlers and pro- independence forces of the self-ruled island.
Sun Yeli, a spokesperson for the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, made the remarks at a press conference in Beijing on Saturday, stressing that under compelling circumstances, the country reserved the right to use force for the reunification of Taiwan with mainland China.
"We do not promise to renounce the use of force and reserve the possibility of taking all necessary measures against the interference of external forces and the extremely small number of pro-Taiwan independence separatist forces and their separatist activities," he said.
China’s actions will not be directed against the people of Taiwan, as Beijing's goal is to promote the process of peaceful reunification of the self-governed island with the mainland, he added.
The Chinese spokesperson went on to say that peaceful reunification is the number one choice for the issue of Chinese Taipei, adding that it will meet the interests of all, including the island’s compatriots.
“We will do our best to achieve peaceful reunification. Even if there is the slightest possibility of such a reunification, we will implement it to the end," he said.
Sun further underlined that a military solution to the issue is “the last resort”, accusing foreign and separatist forces in Chinese Taipei of conducting provocations and using the island to contain China.
“This runs counter to the interests of peoples on both sides of the Taiwan Strait and leads to instability in the region, “he said, expressing hope that “our compatriots will understand that reunification is a good thing and that separatism is a road to nowhere.”
China has sovereignty over Chinese Taipei, and under the ‘One China’ policy, almost all world countries recognize that sovereignty, meaning that they would not establish diplomatic contact with the island's secessionist government.
The US, too, claims commitment to that principle, but in violation of its own stated policy and in an attempt to antagonize Beijing, Washington has courted the secessionist government in Taipei, supporting its anti-China stance, and supplying it with a large cache of weaponry.
Tensions over the self-ruled Taipei intensified following a provocative visit there in August by the US House of Representatives speaker, Nancy Pelosi -- which prompted large-scale Chinese military drills around the island territory – as well as a declaration by US President Joe Biden to defend Taiwan.
Beijing has often emphasized that the issue of Chinese Taipei is a red line that must not be crossed.