During a recent summit with President Joe Biden, Chinese President Xi Jinping made a direct statement about China's intention to reunify with Taiwan, sources confirmed to ABC News.
Xi's Direct Message to Biden
In what was described as blunt language, Xi Jinping told Biden that China will reunify with Taiwan.
While it was unclear whether Beijing plans to use force, Xi indicated an initial attempt for a peaceful reunification.
This direct approach at a summit intended to thaw relations between the U.S. and China was particularly noteworthy.
U.S. officials, while not surprised by Xi's remarks, maintained their stance on the One China policy. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, aboard Air Force One, stated,
"President Xi has been public and clear about his desires for reunification... We have been clear, and the President was clear... that we still adhere to the One China policy, we don't support independence for Taiwan."
Biden Reiterates U.S. Position
When asked about U.S. involvement in global conflicts and its commitment to defend Taiwan, Biden reiterated the U.S. position favoring the One China policy.
He emphasized, "I reiterate what I’ve said since I’ve become president... that we maintain an agreement that there is a One China policy and that... I’m not going to change that."
Reunification with Taiwan has been a publicly stated goal of China for some time. In its readout of the summit, China emphasized the importance of the Taiwan issue in Sino-US relations and urged the U.S. to reflect its stance against 'Taiwan independence' in specific actions.
Xi's Instructions to the Military
Xi Jinping has been instructing his military to "be ready by 2027" to invade Taiwan, according to U.S. intelligence. This preparation underscores the seriousness with which China views the issue of Taiwan.
This summit and the exchange between Xi and Biden highlight the delicate balance in U.S.-China relations, especially regarding the sensitive issue of Taiwan.
The firm stance taken by Xi Jinping and the U.S.'s adherence to the One China policy continue to shape the geopolitical landscape in the region.