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China’s senior military officer in a high-profile visit this week to the United States called on Washington to cease selling weapon systems to Taiwan, China Daily reported.

In a Washington media appearance with U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen, People’s Liberation Army General Staff head Gen. Chen Bingde reaffirmed that Taiwan is a core concern for Beijing and that any new weapons exports to the island would harm relations between the Chinese and U.S. armed forces.

Taiwan has an autonomous government but is still considered in Beijing to be Chinese territory. China has said it would use force to prevent a drive to make the island fully independent.

An agreement for Washington to export $6 billion in weapons technology to Taiwan led China in January 2010 to temporarily suspend military ties with the United States. Taipei, however, has said it is putting off purchasing Patriot missile batteries due to budget constraints.

Source: Global Security Newswire

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