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Relationships Between the United States, China, and Taiwan Have Reached Several Important Milestones

Beijing, which claims the island as its own territory, has issued stern warnings in response to Nancy Pelosi’s planned visit to Taiwan on Tuesday. Pelosi is the speaker of the House of Representatives in the United States.

The following is a list of significant events that have taken place in the context of relations between the United States, China, and Taiwan:

Mao Zedong’s communists were victorious in a civil war against Chiang Kai-Kuomintang shek’s (KMT) nationalists and took control of Beijing in 1949 as a result of their victory. The government, which is now led by the KMT, flees to the island of Taiwan, cutting off all communication with the mainland.

1950: Taiwan joins the United States, which is at war with China in Korea, and becomes an ally of the United States. The United States maintains a fleet in the Taiwan Strait in order to defend its ally against any potential attacks coming from the Chinese mainland.

Beijing launches artillery attacks on some Taiwan-controlled outlying islands off the coast of China’s southeastern coast during the First Taiwan Strait Crisis, which occurred between 1954 and 1955. After losing control of some of the islands, Taipei relocates the remaining residents and military personnel to Taiwan.

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In 1958, during the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis, Beijing begins a series of artillery attacks that will last for several months on the Taiwan-controlled outlying islands of Kinmen and Matsu, which are located relatively close to the Chinese mainland. The United States provides some of the weapons that Taipei uses in its counterattack. China does not take control of any of the islands that are held by Taiwan.

1979 marks the year that the United States officially adopts the “One China Policy” and moves its diplomatic recognition of China’s capital from Taipei to Beijing. Deng Xiaoping, the leader of China, proposes the ideas of “one country, two systems” and “peaceful unification” as potential alternatives to the Chinese government forcibly annexing Taiwan.

1979: The United States of America passes the Taiwan Relations Act, which makes it abundantly clear that the decision of the United States to establish diplomatic ties with Beijing is predicated on the expectation that the fate of Taiwan will be decided by means that are not violent. This expectation is a central tenet of the Taiwan Relations Act. It places an obligation on Washington to assist in providing Taiwan with the means to defend itself against any potential threats.

In 1982, then-President of the United States Ronald Reagan presented Taiwan with a set of guarantees called the “Six Assurances,” which included a commitment not to amend the Taiwan Relations Act.

In 1995, the President of Taiwan, Lee Teng-hui, traveled to the United States to attend a class reunion at Cornell University. This trip drew criticism from Beijing and ratcheted up the level of tension between the two countries.

Taiwan holds its first direct presidential election in 1996, which coincides with the third Taiwan Strait Crisis. As a direct response, Beijing fired missiles into waters close to Taiwan, prompting the United States to send aircraft carriers to the area. In the March elections, incumbent President Lee Teng-hui of Taiwan prevails with an overwhelming majority.

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Chen Shui-bian, a proponent of Taiwanese sovereignty and formal independence, was elected president of Taiwan in the year 2000, marking the first time in power for the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which had previously held no political office.

In March of 2005, Beijing passed a law intended to prevent secession, making it illegal for Taiwan to declare independence. For the first time since 1949, senior members of the Communist Party of China and the Kuomintang (KMT), the principal opposition party in Taiwan, will meet in April.

May of 2008 – KMT-supported After coming to power, President Ma Ying-jeou, who is in favor of closer ties with China, puts aside political disagreements with China in order to discuss business deals with China that range from tourism to commercial flights.

Tsai Ing-wen, the candidate for the Democratic Progressive Party and winner of the election for president of Taiwan in January 2016, ran on a platform of defying China. Beginning in the month of June, China stops having any official communication with Taiwan.

In December 2016, the President-elect of the United States, Donald Trump, broke decades of U.S. diplomatic precedent by speaking directly by telephone with the President of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen.

The Trump administration gives its approval in 2017 for the sale of arms to Taiwan in the amount of $1.4 billion, which causes outrage in Beijing.

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In March of 2018, President Trump signed a bill that encourages the United States to send senior officials to Taiwan to meet with their counterparts there, further infuriating China.

In September of 2018, the United States State Department gave its approval for the sale of up to $330 million worth of spare parts for F-16 fighter jets and other military aircraft to Taiwan. This approval prompted China to issue a warning, stating that it puts the working relationship between Beijing and Washington in jeopardy.

Joe Biden, Vice President of the United States, and Xi Jinping, President of China, have a two-hour conversation over the phone in July 2022. During the conversation, Biden emphasises that “the United States policy has not changed” and that “the United States strongly opposes unilateral efforts to change the status quo or undermine peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.”