The Chinese state-run Global Times newspaper described President-elect Donald Trump “as ignorant as a child” when speaking about foreign diplomacy.
“Many people might be surprised at how the new U.S. leader is truly a ‘businessman’ through-and-through,” the editorial published on Monday read, according to the Washington Post. “But in the field of diplomacy, he is as ignorant as a child.”
The call between Trump and Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen on December 2 was a major break from years of diplomatic protocol in U.S.-China relations. The U.S. and Taiwan cut diplomatic ties in 1979 during Jimmy Carter’s presidency.
The conversation elicited a quick response from China, and Fox News reported that the country flew a bomber capable of holding nuclear weapons over the South China Sea to send a warning to the president-elect.
“China needs to launch a resolute struggle with him,” the Global Times piece read. “Only after he’s hit some obstacles and truly understands that China and the rest of the world are not to be bullied will he gain some perception.”
In a weekend interview with “Fox News Sunday,” Trump defended his call with Tsai, saying that he would not be “bound by a one-China policy unless we make a deal with China having to do with other things, including trade.”
He described the call as “very nice” and was only meant to congratulate him on his victory in the presidential election.
“Why should some other nation be able to say I can’t take a call?” Trump was quoted as saying. “I think it actually would’ve been very disrespectful, to be honest with you, not taking it.”
Geng Shuang, a spokesman for China’s foreign ministry, told the Associated Press that established policy is the “political foundation” of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and his country, and cooperation would be “out of the question” if any damage happens to it.
“We urge the new U.S. leader and government to fully understand the seriousness of the Taiwan issue, and to continue to stick to the one-China policy,” Shuang said.