US Approves Possible $2.2bn Arms Sale To Taiwan
Recovered arms/file

The U.S State Department has approved the possible arms sales to Taiwan estimated to be worth $2.2bn, the Pentagon said on Monday, despite Chinese criticism of the deal.

China’s Foreign Ministry said last month when the possible sale was first reported that it was seriously concerned about US arms sales to self-ruled Taiwan, and it urged the US to halt the sales to avoid harming bilateral ties.

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The sale of the weapons requested by Taiwan, including 108 General Dynamics Corp M1A2T Abrams tanks and 250 Stinger missiles, would not alter the basic military balance in the region, the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said in a statement.

DSCA notified Congress on Monday of the possible arms sale, which it said could also include mounted machine guns, ammunition, Hercules armoured vehicles for recovering inoperative tanks, heavy equipment transporters and related support.

The United States is the main arms supplier to Taiwan, which China considers a renegade province.

Washington has no formal ties with Taiwan but is bound by law to help provide it with the means to defend itself.