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Thursday, May 6, 2021
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White House says China’s moves around Taiwan ‘potentially destabilizing’

The White House on Friday (April 09) said it was keeping a close watch on increased Chinese military activities in the Taiwan Strait, and called Beijing’s recent actions potentially destabilizing.

“We have … clearly – publicly, privately – expressed our concerns, our growing concerns, about China’s aggression toward Taiwan,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters.

“We’ve seen a concerning increase in PRC military activity in the Taiwan Strait, which we believe is potentially destabilizing,” she said, when asked if Washington was concerned about a possible Chinese invasion.

Psaki also told reporters that the United States has been diplomatically engaging with Russia and other countries about “the escalating Russian aggressions in eastern Ukraine, including Russia’s troop movements on Ukraine’s borders.”

“We are, of course, in close consultation and working with partners and allies in the region, to assess, to share intelligence, to determine what’s happening … and what can be done about it,” she said, declining to further discuss the “internal diplomatic process.”

On Thursday, Psaki said that Russia had massed more troops on Ukraine’s eastern border than at any time since 2014, when Moscow annexed Crimea and backed the seizure by separatists of large parts of eastern Ukraine.

She did not elaborate, and the National Security Council declined to provide further details.

In March 2014, as the conflict in eastern Ukraine escalated, Western estimates put the number of Russian troops, militia or special forces on Ukraine’s border at 25,000 to more than 30,000.

(Production: Ashraf Fahim)

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