Liz Truss labels China the ‘biggest threat to the free world’ as she swipes at Rishi Sunak’s ‘mixed messages’ ahead of her visit to Taiwan
Liz Truss today labeled China the “biggest threat we face in the free world,” while warning Beijing must be confident there will be a “serious response” to invading Taiwan.
Ahead of her visit to the island nation this week, the former prime minister reiterated her opinion that the West has become too dependent on the Asian superpower.
In a rebuke to successor Rishi Sunak, she told the Copenhagen Democracy Summit that continuing with the same level of trade with China sends “mixed messages.”
Beijing has long insisted that “official contacts” with the self-governing republic should cease.
Last November, there was a furious reaction to this the UK sent then Commerce Secretary Greg Hands to Taiwan for talks.
China claims Taiwan as its own territory and has threatened to annex the island by force.
Liz Truss today labeled China the “biggest threat we face in the free world” as she warned Beijing must be convinced there will be a “serious response” to invading Taiwan
In a rebuke to successor Rishi Sunak, she told the Copenhagen democracy summit that continuing with the same level of trade with China sent “mixed messages.”
Beijing has attempted to diplomatically isolate the island by imposing visa bans and other forms of retaliation against foreign officials and governments who have contacted it in the past.
The island is being excluded from the United Nations at China’s insistence.
However, it is gaining support from major countries, including Japan, Australia, the US and Canada, and across Europe.
Ms. Truss’s high-profile trip in the coming days will increase Tory pressure on Mr. Sunak to crack down on China.
When asked how her own position on Beijing compares to that of her successor, Ms. Truss said: “I stand by my statement that we should label China as a threat. I think they pose a very clear threat. I think they are the greatest threat to the free world.’
Ms. Truss has said the West needs to make it clear that there will be “a very severe and serious response” to any escalation of Chinese aggression in Taiwan.
“I don’t think Vladimir Putin believed that the West was taking the sanctions seriously before we imposed them, and we should be absolutely clear that if there was any kind of escalation in Taiwan, there would be a very serious and serious response,” he said. she. said.
Ms Truss added: “There is no doubt that the whole Western world, including the United States, including Europe, including the UK, has become too dependent on China, and that’s a problem because it has given China an influence over us , and it is also an economic problem. .
“Yes, the UK needs to take more action, but it’s not just the UK, it’s the European continent, it’s the United States.”
The former prime minister added: “We are sending mixed messages if we continue with the same level of trade and investment with China, but we are only sending messages that are different. We have to show that we mean business.’
China claims Taiwan as its own territory and has threatened to annex the island by force. Pictured is President Xi Jinping