Taiwan Security Enhancement Act

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The Taiwan Security Enhancement Act (H.R.1838) was a US Congressional bill which never became law. It was passed by one of the Houses of the U.S. Congress, the House of Representatives, on February 1, 2000 by a vote of 340 to 70. It envisaged greater United States military support of the Republic of China/Taiwan, including training and equipment. It also contemplated establishing direct military communication lines between the United States and Taiwan. It was never approved by the U.S. Senate or signed into law by the U.S. President.

Its proponents intended the proposed law to strengthen and update the Taiwan Relations Act, which was passed soon after the US ceased official relations with the Republic of China (now commonly known as Taiwan) on December 31, 1978, and instead recognized the People's Republic of China on January 1, 1979.

U.S. President opposed proposed law[edit]

The then U.S. President, Bill Clinton, opposed the proposed legislation. This was so notwithstanding that his own party members in the Congress generally supported it.

Beijing response[edit]

The Chinese Government's spokesperson, responding to press inquiries, gave the Beijing Government's response as follows:[1]

A few members of the US Congress have tried hard to push for the adoption of the Taiwan Security Enhancement Act. The essence is to, through strengthened domestic legislation, provide the so-called legal basis for the provision of various sophisticated weapons and equipment by the US to Taiwan and the establishment and enhancement of direct links between the armed forces in the US and Taiwan. The attempt has gravely threatened peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits and the China-US relations. The Chinese Government and people have, from the very beginning, expressed their strong condemnation of and resolute opposition to the Act, and have lodged serious representation with the US side. The Chinese side has taken note of the fact that the US Government has expressed its opposition to the adoption of the Act by the US Congress. The Chinese side strongly urges the members of the US Congress to stop at once this erroneous act of interfering in the internal affairs of China by using the question of Taiwan, and urges the US Government to abide by the three China US Joint Communiques, see clearly the harmful effect of the Act, and adopt concrete and effective measures to prevent it from becoming law so as not to seriously undermine the China-US relations.

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