China’s Foreign Ministry on Friday called on the United States not to allow Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen to transit through its territories on her way to and from Taiwan’s diplomatic allies in the Pacific.
Tsai departs on Saturday on a week-long trip to three Pacific island allies – Tuvalu, the Solomon Islands and the Marshall Islands – transiting via Honolulu and Guam.
It comes just two weeks before U.S. President Donald Trump is due to visit China.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said China had made “stern representations” to the U.S. over the matter and urged the U.S. to strictly abide by the ‘one China’ policy.
“As for the issue of the leader of the Taiwan region’s transit through the United States, I think the real reason for the transit is self-evident,” he told a daily news briefing.
China is deeply suspicious of Tsai, who it thinks wants to push for the formal independence of Taiwan, a self-governing island that Beijing regards as a wayward province, ineligible for state-to-state relations.