China will renew its military drills around Taiwan after a delegation of U.S. lawmakers made a surprise visit to the self-governed Island, China announced Monday.
Five members of Congress landed in Taiwan on Sunday, less than two weeks after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi outraged China with her own visit. Pelosi’s visit triggered China to hold unprecedented military drills surrounding Taiwan. Those drills will now be renewed in reaction to the second Congressional delegation.
The five members of Congress include Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass, and Reps. John Garamendi, D-Calif; Alan Lowenthal, D-Calif.; Don Beyer, D-VA and Amata Radewagen, R-AS.
The group met with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen and other government officials on Sunday and Monday.
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Pelosi was the highest-level U.S. official to visit the island since House Speaker Newt Gingrich in 1997. Her trip set off nearly two weeks of Chinese military drills around Taiwan in a simulation of a potential invasion.
China has long claimed Taiwan as its own territory, despite the island having its own democratic government. China has argued that visits by U.S. lawmakers infringe on America’s One China Policy, which states that the U.S. acknowledges the Beijing government as the sole government of China.
While the U.S. has agreed not to hold formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan, it has supplied the government with means of defense and other support.
Taiwan first split from mainland China following a civil war between democratic and communist forces in 1949.