US REAR ADMIRAL WARNS PRC NOT TO TAKE ACTION AGAINST TAIWAN
Pattaya, Thailand, Aug. 11 (CNA) Rear Admiral Timothy J. Keating of the US Navy's 7th Fleet said on Wednesday that the People's Republic of China should refrain from taking any military action against Taiwan.
He made the remarks while answering a CNA question at a press conference held aboard the aircraft carrier "Kitty Hawk" in waters adjacent to Pattaya.
Keating said Beijing must consider "very carefully" before it takes actions violating the "Taiwan principle," because the US military power is larger than China's and Washington is ready to take prompt counter-actions.
The "Kitty Hawk," equipped with some 70 various types of jet fighters, will depart for Japan's Yokosuka Harbor via northern Taiwan and the public seas after concluding its visit to Thailand on Aug. 15.
The rear admiral pointed out that the United States thinks Beijing will understand that the appearance of an aircraft carrier in the region will effect stability.
He went on to say that China will come to know that if they take military action against Taiwan or other areas, they will encounter the US military, which is powerful in its number of personnel, training and war preparedness.
Tension has escalated across the Taiwan Strait since ROC President Lee Teng-hui redefined Taiwan's relations with the mainland as a "special state-to-state relationship" in early July.
Jet fighters from both sides of the strait have increased their patrol sorties, and on some occasions mainland Chinese fighters have crossed over the center line of the strait.
The US has asked mainland China and Taiwan to exercise self-restraint, and reiterated its desire for the two sides to resolve their differences through peaceful dialogue. (By Kuo Fang-chin & Victor Lai)