US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi began her tour of Asia as she held talks with Singapore officials. But questions swirled over her Taiwan visit, an issue that has sparked a row with Beijing. Taiwanese media has said that Pelosi would be in the breakaway island nation on Tuesday night though the Americans have held their silence on the issue.
If she makes it to Taiwan, Nancy Pelosi would be the highest-ranking elected US official to visit in over a quarter of a century. All the three leading Taiwanese newspapers, Liberty Times, China Times, and United Daily News, have quoted unnamed sources to reveal that she would be in Taipei, its capital, on Tuesday after her Malaysia visit.
Beijing Has Warned Of Grave Consequences Over Nancy Pelosi’s Visit
China has intensified the rhetoric with the official media stating “don’t say we did not warn you.” She has the might of the American army behind her, but China is just as adamant and has warned that it will not sit idle.
Beijing has even warned that the US was playing with fire and would get burnt if Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan. The Chinese media, totally controlled by the government, has been more direct and militaristic in its threats. They have even suggested that her plane would be shot down if she tries to visit Taiwan.
A Foreign Ministry spokesman has warned of strong and resolute measures to defend the territorial integrity and sovereignty of China. He did not go into details but said that those who play with fire will perish by it. He warned that China was prepared for any eventuality and the PLA would not stand by idly.
The Republicans back home have dared her to go to Taiwan saying that breaking down at this stage would send the wrong message to America’s allies in the region, including South Korea, Japan, and Australia. Senator Tom Cotton even warned that backing down would provoke the Chinese to go for the jugular on Taiwan.