BEIJING, Oct 12: China hit out at former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott over his visit to Taiwan and issued a strong statement against him.
The development comes after Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who is the Special Envoy for Indigenous Affairs of Australia, visited Taiwan last week and met President Tsai Ing-wen along with other government officials, Taiwan News reported. In response to Abbott’s visit, the Chinese embassy in Canberra posted a statement on their website, saying, “Tony Abbot is a failed and pitiful politician,” Taiwan News reported.
The statement also said that “His [Abbott’s] recent despicable and insane performance in Taiwan fully exposed his hideous anti-China features” and added that Abbott’s recent visit will further discredit him.
Speaking at a regional conference in Taipei, Abbott had addressed the full suite of concerns facing the international community in its relations with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
“It’s boosted cyber spying on its own citizens, cancelled popular personalities in favour of a cult of the red emperor, brutalized Indian soldiers in the Himalayas, coerced other claimants in its eastern seas and flown ever more intimidatory sorties against Taiwan,” said Abbott as reported by news agencies.
Beijing claims full sovereignty over Taiwan, a democracy of almost 24 million people located off the south-eastern coast of mainland China, despite the fact that the two sides have been governed separately for more than seven decades.
Taipei, on the other hand, has countered the Chinese aggression by increasing strategic ties with democracies including the US, which has been repeatedly opposed by Beijing. China has threatened that “Taiwan’s independence” means war.
On June 1, Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to complete reunification with self-ruled Taiwan and vowed to smash any attempts at formal independence for the island.