China condemns UK lawmakers' visit to Taiwan as 'gross interference'
China has accused a committee of British lawmakers visiting Taiwan of "gross interference" in China's internal affairs and threatened a forceful response to anything that undermines Chinese interests.
The Chinese embassy in Britain issued a statement responding to the ongoing visit to Taiwan by the British parliament's Foreign Affairs committee, calling it a "flagrant violation" of the one-China principle.
"The Chinese side urges the UK side to abide by its commitment, stop any actions that violate the one-China principle, and stop interfering in China's internal affairs," the spokesperson said in a statement posted on Twitter.
"Moves of the UK side that undermine China's interests will be met with forceful responses from the Chinese side."
The spokesperson said the visit sent the wrong signal to those who want Taiwan to be independent.
The UK committee met with Taiwanese executive head Su Tseng-chang on Thursday and is due to see leader Tsai Ing-Wen on Friday.
The visiting committee is a parliamentary body, separate from government and made up of elected lawmakers (MPs) from a range of parties. It scrutinises government policy but does not have statutory powers.
Britain's diplomatic relations with China have been in decline for several years, embroiled in rows over human rights, economic policy and Beijing's approach to former British colony Hong Kong.
In March 2021, China imposed sanctions on nine Britons, including elected lawmakers, for spreading what it said were "lies and disinformation" about alleged human rights abuses in Xinjiang.
The British government did not comment on the embassy statement.