10 Nov 2003

China expresses increasing anger over Kiribati's recognition of Taiwan

4:31 pm on 10 November 2003

There's been a escalation in China's reaction to a decision by Kiribati to establish diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

The Chinese state media has described the move as "open betrayal."

A foreign ministry spokeswoman, Zhang Qiyue, expressed China's "extreme indignation and resolute opposition"

The Australian Associated Press says Taiwan has denied that Kiribati's decision was tied to funding.

But Ms Zhang accused Taiwan of practising an "unscrupulous policy of money diplomacy"

China is engaged in a diplomatic struggle with Taiwan over global recognition and routinely cuts of all official ties with governments that recognise its arch rival.