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Beijing halts high-level military dialogue with US, suspends other cooperation

Beijing halts high-level military dialogue with US, suspends other cooperation

Flags of China and the US hanging outside a Chinese store. (Photo: AFP/Greg Baker)

BEIJING: China announced on Friday (Aug 5) that it was halting cooperation with the United States in a number of areas, including dialogue between senior-level military commanders, in retaliation for the visit this week to Taiwan by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

China's foreign ministry also said in a statement that it was halting climate talks with the United States, citing Pelosi's "disregard of China's strong opposition and stern representations" on the Taiwan visit.

It will also suspend cooperation with Washington on repatriating illegal migrants, judicial assistance and transnational crime, as well as anti-drug action.

China views self-ruled, democratic Taiwan as part of its territory and has vowed to one day take it, by force if necessary.

Beijing reacted with threats and military drills in the lead-up to and aftermath of Pelosi's visit, which it sees as an unacceptable escalation of ties between Washington and Taiwan's current leaders.

On Friday, China decided to sanction US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her immediate family in response to her "vicious" and "provocative" actions.

This is the latest in a series of responses to Pelosi's decision to visit Taiwan, the highest-level visit by a US official in 25 years, despite China's repeated warnings.

During her visit, Pelosi lauded Taiwan's democracy, economic success and its human rights record. She also met with President Tsai Ing-wen and held a joint news conference.

In response, China fired ballistic missiles and deployed fighter jets and warships on Thursday, launching its largest military exercises around Taiwan. It straddled some of the busiest shipping lanes in the world, at some points just 20km from Taiwan's shore.

China and the United States - the world's two largest carbon emitters - unveiled a surprise climate pact at the COP26 summit in Glasgow last year.

They had pledged to work together to accelerate climate action this decade, and vowed to meet regularly to "address the climate crisis".

Source: Reuters/ic

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