In the midst of ongoing tensions over Taiwan, China threatened to take the democratically self-governing island by force if necessary on Wednesday.
“We will work with the greatest sincerity and exert our utmost efforts to achieve peaceful reunification,” dpa news agency cited a white paper on the Taiwan issue posted by the Chinese government as saying.
“But we will not renounce the use of force, and we reserve the option of taking all necessary measures. Use of force would be the last resort taken under compelling circumstances. We will only be forced to take drastic measures to respond to the provocation of separatist elements or external forces should they ever cross our red lines.
“Let there be no doubt, we will tolerate no foreign interference in Taiwan, we will thwart any attempt to divide our country, and we will combine as a mighty force for national reunification and rejuvenation.
“The historic goal of reuniting our motherland must be realized and will be realised,” it said.
China has previously made similar threats against Taiwan.
The latest flare-up was sparked by Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei last week, despite Beijing’s vehement opposition.
In response, China launched war games in six maritime areas around Taiwan, including live-fire drills.
The Chinese leadership opposes such official contact with Taiwan because it considers the island to be part of its territory.
Taiwan, on the other hand, has long regarded itself as self-sufficient.