In a policy speech devoted to Taiwan, Chinese leader Xi Jingping stressed his firm stance that independence is not an option for Taiwan and urged both sides to reach an early consensus on unification. Xi also said that China reserved the right to use force when countering interference by external forces.
Tsai Ing-wen, President of ROC, responded hours later, emphasizing that 23 million people in Taiwan would never accept the “one country, two systems” approach proposed by Beijing. Ms. Tsai urged that the Chinese government handle the differences across the strait peacefully and as equals. Any forms of intimidation, coercion or military forces would be ruining the cross-strait relation.