From Renmin Ribao (人民网, People’s Daily Online), Aug. 19, 2022, Complete text:

There is only one China in the world and Taiwan is an inalienable part of China. The government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China. This is the essence of the one-China principle and the status quo of the Taiwan question. It has been widely recognized by the international society.

US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to China’s Taiwan region upgraded the substantive exchanges between the US and Taiwan and seriously violated the one-China principle. It was a provocative action that changed the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

The one-China principle clearly defines the status quo in the Taiwan Strait. To violate and challenge this principle is to change the status quo.

Before and after Pelosi’s visit, the US, on the one hand, claimed that the visit “in no way contradicts the long-standing one-China policy” and it “opposes unilateral efforts to change the status quo” in the Taiwan Strait. However, on the other hand, it smeared that Beijing is “trying to change the status quo through force” and “Beijing’s provocative actions are significant escalation and its long-standing attempt to change the status quo.”

This is like a thief crying “stop thief.” It cannot cover up the fact that the US is indeed the one viciously changing the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

Pelosi’s visit itself was a deliberate action aiming at undermining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

In the Joint Communiqué on the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the US, the US has made a clear promise to maintain unofficial relations with Taiwan. However, the visit to Taiwan by Pelosi, the third-highest ranking figure in the US government, was by no means unofficial. Even Pelosi herself admitted it was an “official visit” in a public statement, which was a blatant violation of the Joint Communiqué on the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the US Besides, the US politician has frequently called Taiwan a “country” in public. These wrongful practices of Pelosi exactly explain to the world that the American politician herself is indeed deliberately changing the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

The White House’s connivance is also holding a candle to the devil.

The US said immorally that “the change to the status quo that’s prevailed with regard to Taiwan for more than 40 years is coming from Beijing, not from the US” However, the fact is that the US has broken its commitments made in the three China-US joint communiqués and is going further and further on the way of fudging, hollowing out and distorting the one-China principle.

The US issued the so-called New Guidelines for US Government Interactions with Taiwan Counterparts, which relaxed the restrictions on interactions between the US and the Taiwan region and connived in US senior officials’ visits to Taiwan.

Besides, it also broke its commitment to “gradually reduce its sale of arms to Taiwan, leading, over a period of time, to a final resolution,” continuously enhancing its arms sales to Taiwan in both scale and performance. So far, the total value of American arms sales to Taiwan has exceeded $70 billion. The incumbent administration alone has signed arms deals worth $1.1 billion with Taiwan.

The US, claiming it has no intention of pursuing a policy of “two Chinas” or “one China, one Taiwan,” is blatantly helping Taiwan expand the so-called “international space.” Such practice of saying one thing but doing the opposite exactly indicates that the US is deliberately changing the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

Together with a few other countries, the US issued a so-called statement, in which they reaffirmed that “there is no change in the respective one China policies” and “basic positions on Taiwan,” but suffixed the “one China policies” with “where applicable.” This marked another piece of iron-clad evidence that the US is trying to change the status quo.

Over the recent years, the US has been fudging, hollowing out and distorting the one-China principle in different tricks, modifying it with increasingly more preconditions. For instance, the so-called “Taiwan Relations Act” and the “Six Assurances” were taken as a premise for America’s one-China policy.

From the very beginning, China has been rejecting such unilateral acts.

Placing its domestic laws above international law and trampling upon the international law and the basic norms governing international relations, the US can never escape blame for changing the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

China has to take countermeasures to safeguard its national sovereignty and territorial integrity, given the US provocative actions to change the status quo and the US-Taiwan collusion that undermines regional stability.

China’s countermeasures are resolute, forceful and appropriate, and its military drills open, transparent, professional, and in line with domestic laws, international law and international conventions. They are a deterrence against provocateurs and perpetrators, and will effectively safeguard peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. They showcase the responsibility of a major country. The US unwarranted smear about China’s justifiable, reasonable and legitimate countermeasures exactly revealed the country’s true intention to undermine the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

The historical context of the Taiwan question is crystal clear, and so are the fact and status quo that both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one and the same China. The one-China principle is what underpins peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. When the principle is sabotaged, there would be dark clouds or even violent storms across the Strait.

The US should do what it says, put its commitment of not supporting “Taiwan independence” and not seeking to change the status quo in the Taiwan Strait into practice, and immediately stop its schemes regarding the one-China policy.

(Zhong Sheng is a pen name often used by People’s Daily to express its views on foreign policy and international affairs.)

(Editors: Hongyu and Liang Jun)