NYT: As U.S. and Taiwan Celebrate a Bond, China Responds with Screaming Jets
Tue August, 2020, Age: 2 years
The U.S.’ secretary of health and human services Alex M. Azar met publically with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen on Monday, praising the island’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. The trip marks the highest-level visit to Taiwan by an American official since Washington severed official ties with the country in 1979, in deference to mainland Chinese claims and the “one China policy.” Azar’s visit takes place as the U.S.-China relationship reaches an all-time low, amid talk of a technology trade war and tit for tat sanctions declared by both sides as the U.S. and China disagree on human rights issues in Hong Kong and Xinjiang. While the U.S. and Taiwan have frequently framed their unofficial alliance as being based on “shared democratic values,” China sees the growing outreach as evidence of U.S. interference in its internal affairs. As Azar and Tsai met, two Chinese fighter jets briefly crossed the median line of the Taiwanese strait and were driven back by Taiwanese patrolling aircraft.