Region:
World
Category:
Politics

Obama cautions Trump over provoking China on Taiwan issue

Region:
World
Category:
Politics
Publication date:
Print article

Trump has broken with 4 decades of US diplomacy by suggesting Washington's "One China" stance may be reviewed and by accepting a call from Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen

US President Barack Obama warned his successor Donald Trump, against provoking a "very significant" response from China by reaching out to Taiwan.

Trump has broken with 4 decades of US diplomacy by suggesting Washington's "One China" stance may be reviewed and by accepting a call from Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen.

Beijing regards self-governing Taiwan as part of its sovereign territory and has already expressed anger at Trump's move.

Tension between the world's two greatest powers is running high, as was underlined Thursday, December 15, when Chinese sailors seized an unmanned US naval probe in the South China Sea.

Obama, who leaves office on January 20 to make way for Trump, has taken a cautious stance with the Asian giant and urged the president-elect to proceed with care.

"The idea of One China is at the heart of their conception as a nation," he told reporters at an end of year news conference at the White House.

"And so if you are going to upend this understanding, you have to have thought through what the consequences are, because the Chinese will not treat that the way they'll treat some other issues.

"This goes to the core of how they see themselves, and their reaction on this issue could end up being very significant."