Former AIT Chair: China bullying airlines over Taiwan an attempt to alter status-quo

Former AIT director Richard Bush says the Taiwan issue can not be decided by private companies

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Richard C. Bush III at the Brookings Institute

Richard C. Bush III at the Brookings Institute (By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) –In light of China’s attempts to pressure U.S. airlines to change their designation of Taiwan, the former director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) , Richard Bush has applauded Washington’s efforts to resist what he says are China’s attempts to change the status-quo in cross-strait relations

Bush was quoted in a recent Voice of America article as saying "It should not be an issue between the Chinese government and American companies or any companies for that matter."

China’s attempts to coerce private businesses to make declarations about Taiwan’s political status are inappropriate, and something that the U.S. should oppose.

After the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) sent threatening letters to 36 airlines across the world, demanding that they change the designation of Taiwan to comply with “Chinese law,” White House spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded that China should stop trying to enforce “politically correct Orwellian nonsense” on American companies.

Bush commented that "This is an effort to, in effect, change the status quo in the Taiwan Strait, so it is something the United States government should oppose," reports VOA.  

As for Sanders’ remarks, he added, "I'm not sure bringing George Orwell or talking about political correctness are the precise terms I would use."

Richard Bush now works as the co-director for Center for East Asia Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. He was the director of the AIT from 1997 to 2002.