The State Department on Thursday approved several weapons sales — estimated to be worth more than $1.4 billion — to Taiwan.
The seven approved foreign military sales are the first to the country under the Trump administration. The move is likely to provoke China, which does not accept Taiwan as a separate nation, but instead considers it part of its territory.
The deals include sales of Early Warning Radar Surveillance systems, the Joint Standoff Weapon, torpedoes, missiles, electronic upgrades and related parts, according to a State Department official.
“These sales primarily represent upgrades to existing defense capabilities aimed at converting current legacy systems from analog to digital,” the official said.
The official said the State Department has notified Congress of the intended deals, which comply with the Taiwan Relations Act.
Under the long-standing policy, the United States is obligated to sell weapons to Taiwan “based on an assessment of Taiwan’s defense needs.”
“There is no change to our longstanding ‘one China’ policy,” the officials said.
The last U.S. arms sales to Taiwan was in 2015 and was worth $1.8 billion despite strong opposition from China. That deal mainly included defensive weapons systems, including two Navy frigates, missiles and amphibious assault vehicles.
(via: The Hill)