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China Will ‘Take Off The Gloves’ If Trump Upends The One-China Policy

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Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter

China has issued several scathing responses to Trump’s latest jab at the one-China policy.

“Everything is under negotiation, including one China,” President-elect Donald Trump revealed to the Wall Street Journal Friday, marking Trump’s third attack on the policy Beijing regards as a “prerequisite for the development of relations between China and the rest of the world.” Trump’s comments triggered a strong response from Beijing.

The U.S. has upheld the one-China policy, which acknowledges that there is only one China represented by the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan is a part of China, since it cut diplomatic ties with Taiwan in 1979.

Trump first infuriated China by breaking diplomatic protocol and accepting a phone call from Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen in early December. The president elect doubled down a week later by questioning the value of the one China policy.

Beijing believes he intends to use China’s core interests as leverage or a bargaining chip to force China to make concessions to the U.S. on trade and other relevant issues affecting the bilateral relationship.

“The one-China principle, which is the political foundation of the China-U.S. relations, is non-negotiable,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Monday.

Chinese media took a much harsher stance.

The China Daily said that Beijing’s measured response “can only come from a genuine, sincere wish that the less-than-desirable, yet by-and-large manageable, big picture of China-U.S. relations will not be derailed before Trump even enters office.”

The paper argued that China is understanding and willing to forgive one, even two mistakes, but it will not be patient or offer forgiveness a third time.

If Trump opens the “Pandora’s box of lethal potential” that is the Taiwan issue, “a period of fierce, damaging interactions will be unavoidable, as Beijing will have no choice but to take off the gloves,” the state-run newspaper explained.

“He speaks like a rookie,” the Global Times asserted. If Trump stays the course on his “despicable strategy,” China “will be prompted to speed up Taiwan reunification and mercilessly combat those who advocate Taiwan’s independence,” the nationalist paper stressed.

“If he implements his foreign policy with amateurish logic and excessive conceit, China and other countries would have to stand up against the US to defend their interests. The world will then be in chaos,” the Global Times concluded.

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