Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday strongly advocated annexation of Taiwan to the mainland amid rising tensions with the self-governing island, saying the “Taiwan question” will be resolved and “peaceful reunification” is in the best interest of the people. of both sides.
There is “no outside interference” on the Taiwan issue, Xi said in the backdrop of the US and Japan increasing their support on the isolated island in the face of China’s increasingly aggressive stance.
Xi’s remarks came after China sent a record number of military jets into Taiwan’s air defense area during a public demonstration for four consecutive days.
Taiwan considers itself a sovereign state – but China views the self-governing island as a separate province. Beijing has not ruled out the possible use of force to achieve unification.
Speaking at the ornate Great Hall of the People in Beijing to celebrate the 110th anniversary of the revolution that ended the country’s last imperial dynasty, Xi said the biggest obstacle to China’s reunification was the “Taiwan independence” force.
Xi, the general secretary of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC), said the question of Taiwan arose from the weakness and anarchy of the Chinese nation and would be resolved as a form of national rejuvenation.
“It is determined by the general trend of Chinese history, but more importantly, it is the general will of all Chinese people,” Xi said.
He said that after years of hard work, with stronger institutions, stronger physical foundations and more active mindset, China’s national rejuvenation has become a historical imperative.
“National integration by peaceful means best serves the interests of the Chinese nation, including compatriots in Taiwan,” he said, even as he pledged to reunite the island of more than 23 million, which is 1.4. Billion is opposed to the forced integration of the population with the mainland. .
The Revolution of 1911, led by the Nationalists led by Sun Yat-sen, ended 2,132 years of imperial rule and 276 years of Manchu rule, and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) followed by the beginning of China’s republican era in 1949. started the formation.
Taiwan opted for democracy by breaking away from the PRC in 1949, fighting a civil war with the CPC led by Mao Zedong.
Since taking power in 2012, 68-year-old President Xi has made the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation and the realization of the Chinese dream and the integration of Taiwan with mainland China as his main goals.
Last week, a Chinese military plane made a record 150 flights into Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ), after the US expressed serious concerns over the escalation.
The intensity of China’s air strikes prompted US President Joe Biden to remind Xi that he had agreed to abide by the “Taiwan Agreement” during a telephone conversation last month.
“I have spoken with Xi about Taiwan. We agree, we will abide by the Taiwan Agreement. We made it clear that I don’t think he should do anything other than abide by the agreement,” Biden said.
In his address, Xi stressed that the question of Taiwan is purely an internal matter of China, with no outside interference.
“The complete integration of our country will happen and can be felt,” he insisted.
Xi recalled that the mainland adheres to the basic policies of peaceful reunification and upholds the one country, two systems, one-China policy and the 1992 consensus and works for the peaceful development of cross-strait relations.
But critics say China’s adherence to the One Country, Two Systems came into question when it took control of Hong Kong, a former British colony, last year by invoking its national security law.
President Xi’s remarks on Saturday appeared more conciliatory than his last major intervention on Taiwan in July, where he pledged to “sever” any attempts at formal Taiwanese independence.
“Aggression and hegemony are not in the blood of the Chinese people. Our people hope to achieve national development successfully, but they also hope that all the people of the world live a happy and peaceful life.”
“China will continue to be a champion of world peace, a contributor to global development and a defender of the international order, and we will do our best to make an even greater contribution to humanity,” he said.
“Through courage and skill, we will overcome all the major risks and challenges that may impede our path to national rejuvenation and safeguard our national sovereignty, security and development interests,” he said of the Quad Grouping. Said with an indirect reference to the formation. The US, India, Australia and Japan as well as the establishment of AUKUS, a tripartite security alliance between the US, UK and Australia.
“The compatriots on both sides of the Taiwan Strait should stand on the right side of history and join hands to achieve the complete unification of China and the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation,” he said.
Those who forget their heritage, betray their homeland and try to divide the country will have no good ending, Xi said, hitting out at Taiwan’s independence supporters.
Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen is a strong supporter of Taiwan’s independence.
President Tsai said at a security forum in Taipei on Friday that although his government did not call for a military conflict, “Taiwan will also do whatever it takes to protect its freedoms and democratic way of life.”
Taiwan’s Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng said on Wednesday that China may be able to launch a “full-scale” invasion of the island by 2025.
While Xi made no mention of the use of military force in his Saturday speech, he had previously refused to dismiss it.
Xi also highlighted the role and importance of the CPC led by him, which celebrated its centenary this year.
He said that the last 110 years since the 1911 revolution has shown the Chinese people that China needs a strong force.
“The past 110 years have shown us that in order to realize national rejuvenation, the Chinese people must have a strong force to propel us forward, and that strength is the Communist Party of China,” he said.
Considered the most powerful leader since Mao to lead the CPC, the military and the presidency, Xi is set to complete his second term next year and is expected to remain in power, possibly for life, in the wake of the 2018 constitutional amendments. who removed it. Limit of two terms for the President.
Till now all his predecessors have retired after two terms.
Emphasizing the importance of strong leadership, Xi said that without the CPC, there would be no New China and no national rejuvenation.
Efforts should be made to ensure that the CPC always stands firmly as the most reliable backbone of the Chinese nation and people.
“The last 110 years have shown us that in order to realize national transformation, the path we take is of fundamental importance. Socialism with Chinese characteristics has proved to be the only right path.
“The past 110 years have shown us that in order to realize national rejuvenation, the Chinese people and nation must live together in good and bad times, and build on our strong unity to overcome all risks and challenges on the road ahead. Must trust.
“On the journey ahead, we must fully promote patriotism, foster a strong sense of national dignity and self-confidence among our people, and strengthen the Chinese nation’s sense of community,” he said, “widely Called for the formation of a possible patriotic United Front. “
The past 110 years have shown us that in order to realize national rejuvenation, China needs not only a stable and united domestic environment, but also a peaceful and stable international environment, the Chinese President said.