China and the U.S. are sparring over El Salvador’s decision to drop Taiwan in favour of formal relations with Beijing, with a Chinese spokesman accusing Washington of trying to deter other nations from making similar moves.
El Salvador’s announcement Monday prompted the U.S. ambassador to the South American country, Jean Manes, to tweet that the decision “is worrisome for many reasons.”
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio threatened to block funding for El Salvador, accusing it of being “against the U.S. on everything.”
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang responded Wednesday that Washington is “thwarting and even deterring” other countries from recognising China.
Taiwan, which China claims as its own territory, now has just 17 diplomatic allies as China ratchets up pressure on the island’s independence-leaning government to endorse Beijing’s position.