Taiwan hopes the world will punish China like it is punishing Russia for its war on Ukraine if Beijing invades the island, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said on Saturday.
Taiwan has joined Western sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine and on Friday added Belarus to that list.
The moves are largely symbolic given Taiwan’s minimal levels of direct trade with Belarus or Russia.
But Ukraine’s plight has drawn widespread public sympathy in Taiwan due to what many see as parallels between what is happening in the European country and what could happen if China ever resorts to force. to place the island it claims as its own under Chinese control.
Speaking to reporters in Taipei at an event marking the founding of what would become the European Union, Wu said it was important to stand with others in denouncing the invasion and sanctioning both Russia and Belarus.
“In the future, if we are threatened with force by China, or if we are invaded, we of course hope that the international community can understand and support Taiwan, and sanction this kind of aggressive behavior,” he said. he adds.
“So Taiwan stands with the international community and takes these measures,” Wu said, referring to the sanctions.
Taiwan has raised its alert level since the start of the war in Ukraine, fearing that China could make a similar move, although the Taipei government has not reported any signs of an imminent Chinese attack.
China, which did not condemn the Russian invasion, rejected any comparison with Taiwan, saying it was not a country and merely a Chinese province, a view the democratically elected government in Taipei strongly disputes.
Speaking at the same event, Taiwanese parliament speaker You Si-kun said Ukraine had performed “very well”, standing up to Russia for more than 70 days, earning “admiration” from Taiwan.
“We hope that Ukraine will be definitively victorious and will stand firm until the end.”
How the world would react to a Chinese invasion of Taiwan is unclear, given that most countries, including the US and all EU member states, only have formal diplomatic relations. with Beijing, not with Taipei, and unlike Ukraine, do not recognize Taiwan as a country.