China threatens Taiwan independence supporters with criminal liability for life

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China is threatening to make supporters of independence for Taiwan criminally liable for life, China’s Taiwan Affairs Office spokesperson Zhu Fenglian said in a statement Friday.

“Those who forget their ancestors, betray the motherland and split the country, will never end up well and will be spurned by the people and judged by history,” Zhu stated, Reuters reported.

The democratically run island declares itself its own independent country while China says Taiwan is not a separate entity and they control the island. 

Those who say Taiwan is its own country or support moves for Taiwan to be independent will be criminally liable for life, Zhu says, while releasing a list of those who are “stubbornly pro-Taiwan independence.”

The list includes Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang, Parliament Speaker You Si-kun and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu, who are no longer allowed to go to mainland China and special administrative regions of China due to their support for Taiwan independence, Zhu said.

People on the list and companies who support people on the list will not be allowed to work with people or companies from China, according to Reuters. 

“We do not accept intimidation and threats from an autocratic and authoritarian region,” Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council said in response to the list. 

Tensions between Taiwan and China have heightened in recent weeks with China flying warplanes into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone and Taiwan increasing efforts to train its military.

China’s announcement follows Republican senators introducing a bill that would give Taiwan’s military $2 billion a year until 2032. 

Tags Politics of China Politics of Taiwan Reuters Taiwan Affairs Office Taiwan independence movement Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council

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