The United States House of Representatives passed a bill that calls for the ban of the use of public funds to buy, make or display any map showing Taiwan as part of Chinese territory.
The motion “prohibits the expenditure of funds to create, procure or display any map that depicts Taiwan as part of the People’s Republic of China,” reads the text of the bill.
Speaking on the House floor on Wednesday, the amendment’s main sponsor, Tiffany, said: “This is a common-sense measure. As we all know, Taiwan has never been part of Communist China. The Taiwanese people elect their own leaders, raise their own armed forces, conduct their own foreign policy and maintain their own international trade agreements.”
“By every measure, Taiwan is a sovereign, democratic and independent country. Any claims to the contrary are simply false,” said the Wisconsin representative.
Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Joanne Ou thanked the lawmakers for their “continued show of support through concrete actions.”
Taiwan will follow the bill’s progress, maintain its close ties with the U.S. executive and legislative branches and continue to deepen positive U.S.-Taiwan relations, Ou said.
Taiwan and mainland China have been governed separately since the end of the Chinese Civil War more than 70 years ago. While the Chinese Communist Party has never ruled Taiwan, Beijing considers the island to be an “inseparable part” of its territory and has repeatedly threatened to use force if necessary to prevent the island from formally declaring independence.
In recent years, China has stepped up its military pressure on Taiwan. In June, the country sent over two dozen warplanes near the island, prompting Taiwan to alert its air defences.