President Elect Donald J Trump said to the Wall Street Journal during an interview on Friday night that everything is under negotiation once he enters the White House, the One China policy included. He also mentioned that he would not commit like his predecessors to back the One China policy, a position Beijing regards as non negotiable.
The aforementioned One China issue involves Taiwan, which is regarded by the Chinese government as a breakaway (as in rogue) province, which de jure belongs to China, even if today things are a tad murky in that part of the world.
The United States refused to recognize Taiwan’s government as legitimate starting with 1979 and thus adopted the One China policy, concomitantly renewing their diplomatic relations with communist China.
Last month, in the aftermath of winning the election, Donald Trump was called via phone by Taiwan’s president Tsai Ing-wen and he accepted the conversation, thus breaking a longstanding diplomatic protocol, a move that made China to lodge a formal complaint. Just a couple of weeks ago in December 2016, China confiscated (basically stole) a US Navy unmanned drone in the South China Sea, yet it returned it a few days later in a move regarded as blow-back for Trump accepting to speak with Tsai Ing-wen.
Trump explained his decision to accept the call from the Taiwanese president on Friday saying that, let me quote:
“We sold them $2 billion of military equipment last year. We can sell them $2 billion of the latest and greatest military equipment but we’re not allowed to accept a phone call. First of all it would have been very rude not to accept the phone call.”
“I would talk to them first. Certainly they are manipulators.Instead of saying, ‘We’re devaluating our currency,’ they say, ‘Oh, our currency is dropping.’ It’s not dropping. They’re doing it on purpose.Our companies can’t compete with them now because our currency is strong and it’s killing us.”
“In order to avoid disruption to the sound and steady development of the China-U.S. relations and bilateral cooperation in key areas, we urge relevant parties in the U.S. to fully recognize the high sensitivity of the Taiwan question, approach Taiwan-related issues with prudence and honor the commitment made by all previous U.S. administrations of both parties on adhering to the one-China policy and the principles of the three joint communiques”