President-elect Donald Trump questioned in an interview broadcast Sunday whether the United States should continue its “one China policy” unless Beijing makes concessions on trade and other issues.
“I don’t want China dictating to me,” Trump said as he made a vehement defense of his recent phone conversation with the president of Taiwan.
“I don’t know why we have to be bound by a one China policy unless we make a deal with China having to do with other things, including trade,” he added in the interview on Fox News Sunday.
— Sky News (@SkyNews) December 11, 2016
He was responding to a question on his taking that call this month from Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, breaking with decades of US diplomatic tradition that recognizes Beijing as the sole representative of China.
Trump said he had had just a couple of hours notice that the call was coming, not weeks or longer as has been reported.
Besides trade, Trump said China was not cooperating with America on its handling of its currency, on North Korea and its nuclear weapons, or on tensions in the South China Sea, where he said China is building “a massive fortress.”
On the nuclear weapons issue, Trump argued that China as North Korea’s main patron “could solve that problem.”
“They’re not helping us at all,” Trump said.
Trump said it would have been disrespectful not to take the call from Tsai, who he said wanted to congratulate him on his election win.
“It was a very nice call. Short. And why should some other nation be able to say I can’t take a call?,” Trump asked.