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The Department of State is seeking approval from the House and Senate foreign relations committees for a deal with Taiwan worth $8 billion, Defense News reports. Taiwan reportedly asked to buy 66 jets.
The deal would be “highly harmful” and would violate the “one China” principle, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said.
“China will take necessary measures to safeguard its interests in accordance with the development of the situation,” the spokesman said.
Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle cheered the proposed arms deal, which has not been officially confirmed by the State Department.
The potential sale “sends a strong message about the U.S. commitment to security and democracy in the Indo-Pacific,” House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel and top committee Republican Michael McCaul said in a joint statement.
The news comes as the U.S. and China continue to duke it out in a trade war, and some have speculated that the arms deal could be used as a bargaining chip in trade negotiations.
Since 1979, the U.S. has sold arms of various kinds to Taiwan, which broke away from China in 1949.
FOX Business correspondent Edward Lawrence contributed to this report.