President Biden addressed a group of East Asian leaders Wednesday and accused Beijing of “coercive” actions across the Taiwan Strait as tensions between the US and China over Taiwan continue to rise.
“We are deeply concerned by China’s coercive … actions,” Biden told the East Asia Summit, which was hosted by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The virtual event was also attended by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and officials from New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, and India.
Biden also spoke of the US commitment to Taiwan. “The US is committed to Taiwan. In fact that commitment is rock solid and consistent across administrations. It continues to be the maintenance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits and within the region,” he said.
Last week, Biden said the US has a “commitment” to defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion. The comment appeared to go against the decades-old policy of “strategic ambiguity” over Taiwan. US officials were quick to clarify that Biden’s statement was not a change in policy, but the gaffe still added to the mounting tensions over Taiwan.