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GOP Senators Push Annual $2 Billion in Military Aid for Taiwan

US Republican lawmakers have introduced a bill to provide the armed forces of Taiwan with $2 billion in yearly aid to bolster the island’s defensive capabilities amid increasing tensions with China.

The assistance would come in the form of Foreign Military Financing, allowing the Asian nation to spend that amount to purchase high-powered weapons and equipment developed and produced in the US until 2032.

According to the bill’s lead sponsor, Senator Jim Risch, Taiwan’s defense is critical to the future security of the entire Indo-Pacific region. “This funding is contingent on Taiwan’s commitment to further advance initiatives championed by President Tsai to build a credible defense,” he explained, as quoted by The Hill.

If the legislation passes the Senate, an assessment would be conducted every year to evaluate Taiwan’s military preparedness, especially against China, which claims the island as part of its territory.

Additional Inclusions

In addition to billions in yearly aid for Taiwan, the legislation would amend the existing Arms Export Control Act to allow the American government to sell armaments to Taiwan more easily.

The bill would increase military exchange with the island and expand Taiwanese soldiers’ professional military education and technical training opportunities.

To continue receiving the aid, Taiwan must ensure that it follows certain conditions set by the US, including matching the country’s spending and agreeing to conduct joint long-range planning for capacity development.

“The defense of Taiwan is critical to retaining the credibility of the United States as a defender of the democratic values and free-market principles embodied by the people and government of Taiwan,” the bill stressed.

Although the legislation is sponsored by the Senate’s minority party, it reportedly puts added pressure on the Biden administration to strengthen ties with the diplomatically isolated nation.

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