BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Asia-Pacific
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 

Tuesday, 24 April, 2001, 15:55 GMT 16:55 UK
China unhappy but relieved
China military
China says the arms sales is a violation of its sovereignty
By Rupert Wingfield-Hayes in Beijing

Beijing is clearly extremely unhappy at the arms package Washington is reported to be offering Taiwan.

In its first response, China's Foreign Ministry called the arms sales a grave violation of China's sovereignty and a rude interference in its internal affairs.

The arms package being offered to Taiwan will reportedly include four powerful navy destroyers, eight diesel submarines and sophisticated submarine hunting aircraft.

These are the most advanced weapons to be sold to Taiwan by any country in at least a decade.

Far from hysterical

But while Beijing's initial response is robust it is far from being hysterical.

China may be waiting for Washington to make a formal announcement of the deal before making a full response.

But the measured tone may also reflect relief here that the arms package does not include the most sophisticated weapons Taiwan had been asking for, in particular the Aegis naval air defence system.

Beijing has made it clear the sale of the Aegis system to Taiwan would have been tantamount to Washington declaring a new military alliance with an island that China claims is an integral part of its own territory.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

20 Apr 01 | Asia-Pacific
Taiwan repels mock Chinese attack
12 Apr 01 | Asia-Pacific
Taiwan's fears over spy plane
16 Mar 01 | Asia-Pacific
China builds new missile base
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Asia-Pacific stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Asia-Pacific stories