BEIJING - China's Foreign Ministry on Thursday condemned the United States for its latest arms sales offer to Taiwan, calling the decision "grave interference" in China's internal affairs and saying it will damage US military and security ties with Beijing.
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun voiced China's "strong indignation and resolute opposition" to the sale of F-16 fighter upgrades and other military equipment when he called in the US Ambassador to Beijing, Gary Locke, the ministry's website (www.mfa.gov.cn) reported.
"No matter what the excuses and reasons, there can be no hiding that United States' announcement of plans to sell arms to Taiwan is grave interference in China's domestic affairs and sends a gravely mistaken signal to pro-Taiwan independence separatist forces," said Zhang.
"It must be pointed out that this wrongful course by the US side will unavoidably damage Sino-American relations and cooperation and exchanges in the military, security and other fields," said Zhang.
The Obama administration formally notified Congress of the details of an F-16 fighter jet upgrade package, requested by Taiwan in November 2009, despite repeated opposition from China, which views the self-ruled island as a renegage province.