Beijing Squares Up to Washington Over 'Orwellian' Airline Rules

Posted May 08, 2018

Indonesia's national airline, Garuda Indonesia, is in hot water for describing Taiwan's Taoyuan International Airport as part of China.

"Whatever the United States said will never change the objective fact that there is only one China in the world and that the Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan regions are an inalienable part of China's territory", Geng noted.

The spat comes shortly after a high-level USA delegation returned from two days in Beijing with little to show for talks aimed at averting a trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

Washington has maintained a delicate diplomatic balance since 1979, recognising Beijing's sovereignty as part of its "One China" policy, while remaining Taiwan's most powerful unofficial ally and main weapons supplier. "Whatever the USA said can not change the fact that there is only one China in the world and Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan are indispensable parts of Chinese territory", Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Geng Shuang stressed, adding that companies need to "respect the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity" and "respect the Chinese people's national sentiments".

READ: China Southern wants to deepen American relationship.

In January, Delta Air Lines, following a demand from China to change its listing of Taiwan and Tibet as countries on its website, apologised for making "an inadvertent error with no business or political intention".

Australian carrier Qantas, which also received the letters, had been referring to Taipei as part of Taiwan and was still doing so Monday in the drop-down menu in its booking engine. The airlines were given 30 days to comply.

At the same time, 64.4 percent of the respondents say that China's efforts to squeeze Taiwan in the worldwide community will only push Taiwan further away from it.

Already in the midst of a bitter trade feud with Beijing, Washington too has taken a grim view of the letter issued.

"China is like a crying baby that is demanding candies", he said.

"The trade-based tension is putting the issue into greater prominence".

"Whatever the USA said will never change the objective fact that there is only one China in the world".

"Until now the parties involved have been able to agree on a workable solution and we hope that can continue".

In recent months, various non-Chinese companies, including Mercedes Benz and Marriott Hotels, have been at the center of controversies involving the Chinese government.

All but 19 countries officially recognise China and do not officially recognise Taiwan.

Taiwan has been home to China's legitimate government of Kuomintang since the communist takeover in Beijing back in 1949.