Treasury Secretary Yellen: US prepared to impose sanctions on China if Taiwan invasion occurs

  • U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen confirmed the Biden administration's intention to use sanction tools against China if Beijing ever “moved aggressively toward Taiwan.”
  • Amid the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine, tensions between China and Taiwan have mounted.
  • Chinese spokespersons have denied similarities to Russia's invasion and restated “One-China” policy sentiments.
  • Last Wednesday, the U.S., G7 and EU released a joint statement increasing actions and sanctions against Russia.

U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen confirmed the Biden administration’s intention to use sanction tools against China if Beijing ever “moved aggressively toward Taiwan.”

In response to Congressman Patrick McHenry’s (R-NC) questioning on April 6, Yellen confirmed the administration’s “ability and resolve” to sanction China if aggression against Taiwan ever came to light. She backed her position by stating, “I believe we’ve shown we can impose significant pain on aggressive countries, as evidenced by sanctions against Russia.”

Amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, tensions have mounted between China and Taiwan. Earlier this year, Taiwan spotted Chinese warplanes in its Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ). Further, President Tsai Ing-wong called for unity in defense of the nation and strengthened military surveillance operations. 

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Last month, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hya Chunying reiterated “One-China” policy sentiments, stating that Taiwan as an “inalienable” part of China’s territory is “an irrefutable historical and legal fact.” This was further emphasized in China’s response last week to U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s scheduled, but then canceled, visit to Taiwan, which Beijing called “the most serious provocation.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian reconfirmed these statements on April 7, stating that “the Chinese people’s resolve and will to defend our sovereignty and territorial integrity is unwavering.”

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