China has threatened the US with war over the stationing of a small marine contingent in the Taiwan embassy. Breitbart reports:
China’s displeasure at the notion of U.S. Marines guarding the American diplomatic mission in Taiwan reached fever pitch on Tuesday, as China’s state-run Global Times denounced the security detail tantamount as an “invasion of the U.S. military of Chinese soil.”
The United States does not have a formal embassy in Taiwan, but a facility known as the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) serves that purpose in effect. China is extremely sensitive to any measures that treat Taiwan as an independent nation, including steps that would make the AIT look like a real foreign embassy instead of a “de facto” consulate.
The U.S. State Department requested a Marine Security Guard detachment for the AIT before the Fourth of July holiday this year, prompting immediate Chinese warnings to “exercise caution” and “avoid affecting overall bilateral ties.”
Beijing stressed the importance of respecting the “One China” policy, which states that Taiwan is largely autonomous but remains an inseparable part of China. In practice, One China means Taiwan must avoid declaring complete independence and preserve the possibility of peaceful reunification at some future date–and other countries must refrain from helping Taiwan become fully independent.
The Trump Administration has already hinted at closer relations with Taiwan.