China needs to show the world that it is not an “agent of instability” and will act peacefully in the Taiwan Strait, said US Ambassador to China Nicholas Burns. Speaking to CNN, he, however, stressed that Washington does not believe that there should be a strain in the ties between the US and China due to the US House of Representatives Speaker “peaceful” visit to Taiwan, calling Beijing’s reaction to Nancy Pelosi’s Taiwan trip a “manufactured crisis” and an “overreaction”.

Amid the ongoing tensions between Taipei and Beijing, Burns stated that there have been concerns in the world that China has become “an agent of instability” in the Taiwan Strait. He said that he received the summons for a meeting with Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng at the time when Pelosi’s flight landed in Taiwan. Calling the discussion “very spirited and contentious”, Burns informed that he defended the right of Pelosi to arrive in Taiwan during his meeting with Xie Feng. Reiterating that he defended the “peace and stability” that exists in the Taiwan Strait for around sixty years, the US envoy to China called on Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng to take action that promotes “peace and stability.”

Speaking to CNN, Burns underscored that China initiated military drills after Pelosi’s visit to “intimidate and coerce the Taiwan authorities” and launched a “global campaign” against the US for what it viewed as an action that undermined its stability in the Taiwan Strait. US Envoy to China Nicholas Burns stressed that China’s diplomatic actions regarding the US after Pelosi’s visit could impact the world, including the suspension of talks on climate that would affect the Global South and countries that are most susceptible to climate change. He called on China to return to the “negotiating table” with the US on talks related to climate. Burns called for regular talks between the two nations.

US delegation’s visit to Taiwan

Notably, the relations between US and China have been strained after the US House of Speakers travelled to Taiwan on August 2. China raised objections over her visit to Taiwan, which Beijing considers as part of its territory. In response to Pelosi’s visit, China launched military drills around Taiwan and announced cancelling the China-US Theater Commanders talks, Defence Policy Coordination Talks (DPCT) and other cooperation between the two nations. Nearly two weeks after Pelosi’s visit, the US delegation led by Ed Markey travelled to Taiwan and held a meeting with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen. Addressing a press briefing on 15 August, Chinese Foreign Ministry Wenbin called on the US to follow the One-China principle and stressed that China will take “resolute and strong measures” to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Image: AP