G7 Nations’ Statement On Taiwan And Hong Kong Draws Beijing’s Dissatisfaction
A Group of Seven (G7) foreign minister meeting in Tokyo ended on Wednesday, majorly calling for humanitarian pauses in the Israel-Hamas conflict to allow in aid and help the release of hundreds of hostages taken by Hamas in a surprise attack on October 7.
In a joint statement, the G7 urged China to address its non-market policies, not to assist Russia in its brutal invasion of Ukraine, to maintain peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, and to allow a high level of autonomy for Hong Kong.
Beijing expressed dissatisfaction with China-related comments and urged the bloc to stop inciting confrontation, its embassy in Japan said in a statement on Thursday. “China will resolutely counter any smear campaigns from external forces,” it noted.
Critical comments on Hong Kong and Taiwan have long drawn flak from Beijing, which considers such criticism as outside interference. China considers the democratically governed Taiwan island as part of its territory, although Taipei City rejects Beijing’s claim.
G7 Pledges Unwavering Support Amid “Ukraine Fatigue”
Tsai Ing-wen, the President of Taiwan, said she would continue to work with the G7 towards a free and open Indo Pacific. Meanwhile, some nations in the West have regularly reminded China to protect Hong Kong’s apparently weakening democratic principles, freedoms and autonomy.
At the meeting in Japan, the group of rich nations also insisted their support for Ukraine “will never waver”, despite the raging conflict in the Middle East. They reiterated they would continue to support Kyiv militarily and economically, recognising that Russia is prepared for a long war.
The governments of the G7 nations said the Israel-Hamas war should not distract from support for Ukraine. Leaders agreed on the need to impose severe sanctions on Russia. Kyiv is concerned about “Ukraine fatigue” in the West eroding its ability to hold off Moscow.
American officials say current aid will run out within weeks. An additional US funding for Ukraine of about $60 billion requested by President Joe Biden has been held up by opposition from Republicans, raising prospects of disastrous consequences for Ukrainian forces.