The Trump administration has formally approved a major eight-billion-dollar arms sale to Taiwan.The new weaponry is the largest US sale to Taiwan in years and could further erode ties with Beijing, as it views the self-governing island as part of China.
The Defense Security Cooperation Agency released a statement Tuesday that the U.S. State Department had approved a possible sale of 66 F-16 fighter jets and related equipment.
The statement said quote, “This proposed sale will contribute to the recipient’s capability to provide for the defense of its airspace, regional security, and interoperability with the United States.”
Including fighter jets in the sale was particularly irksome to Beijing as they would enhance Taipei's ability to potentially conduct military operations in the Taiwan Strait, the narrow waterway that separates China from Taiwan.
In response, China is now threatening sanctions on the US Firms that are selling the arms to Taiwan.