If Washington permits Taiwan to change the name of its representative office in the United States, a Chinese state-run media outlet has warned of “serious” military and economic implications for the self-ruled island.

“Beijing will definitely take economic and military actions against the arrogance of the U.S. and Taiwan,” said Hu Jixin on Sunday, October 24, head of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) mouthpiece Global Times.

“If the U.S. and the Taiwan island change the names, they are suspected of touching the red line of China’s Anti-Secession Law, and the Chinese mainland will have to take severe economic and military measures to combat the arrogance of the U.S. and the island of Taiwan. At that time, the mainland should impose severe economic sanctions on the island and even carry out an economic blockade on the island, depending on the circumstances,” Hu continued.

Hu was referring to the Biden administration’s consideration of changing the name of the post from the “Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office” (TECRO) to the “Taiwan Representative Office.”

Hu views this movement by Biden’s office as a test of “the attitude of the Chinese mainland” and thinks that it is “unnecessary.”

“The name change provides the Chinese mainland with sufficient reason to strengthen our sovereign claim over the island of Taiwan. It is anticipated that the Taiwan army will not dare to stop the PLA fighter jets from flying over the island. If the Taiwan side dares open fire, the Chinese mainland will not hesitate to give ‘Taiwan independence’ forces a decisive and destructive blow,” said Hu.

“At this point, it is foreseeable that the mainland fighter jets will fly over the island of Taiwan. The mainland has been planning it for a long time. I’d like to point out that the U.S. and Taiwan have continued to increase the mainland’s cost of maintaining peace in the Taiwan Straits. More than half of China’s diplomatic troubles have to do with the Taiwan question. Calls for a thorough solution to the Taiwan question through force are consistently increasing in the mainland. The Taiwan question is getting very close to the tipping point.”

Between 2017 and 2019, the labels “Taiwan” and “Republic of China” were forcibly removed from the titles of seven Taipei missions in countries without diplomatic recognition, including Nigeria, Jordan, and Ecuador, under pressure from Beijing, according to Financial Times. 

Taiwan established the “Taiwanese Representative Office” in Lithuania in July. It enraged China, which sent its ambassador to Vilnius on leave and instructed Lithuania to send its envoy to Beijing on leave.

President Joe Biden has shown his determination to protect Taiwan in a recent event at CNN town hall.

The president was asked if he could “vow to protect Taiwan” and what he would do to stay up with China’s military advancements like hypersonic missiles, which China was allegedly reported to conduct a testing event. 

“Yes and yes,” said Mr. Biden. He went on to say that there was no need to “worry about whether they’re going to be more powerful,” because “China, Russia and the rest of the world knows we’re the most powerful military in the history of the world,” BBC reported.

The U.S. president also replied to CNN anchor Anderson Cooper if the U.S. would come to Taiwan’s defense in the case of a Chinese invasion: “Yes, we have a commitment to do that.”


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