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MOFA response to remarks by US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on sidelines of ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting-Plus

  • Date:2023-11-17
  • Data Source:Department of East Asian and Pacific Affairs

November 17, 2023   

During remarks to the press on the sidelines of the ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting-Plus in Jakarta, Indonesia, on November 16, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III stated that the United States was committed to doing what was necessary to help Taiwan acquire the means to defend itself in accordance with the Taiwan Relations Act. With respect to the question of Washington’s commitment to accelerate the supply of weapons to Taiwan, Defense Secretary Austin reiterated that the United States would remain alert to threats from China and did not wish to see any unilateral change to the status quo. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China (Taiwan) acknowledges and welcomes the comments made by Defense Secretary Austin.


Since assuming office in 2021, the Biden administration has on multiple occasions used bilateral and multilateral forums to emphasize the rock-solid US security commitment to Taiwan. The remarks made by Defense Secretary Austin in Jakarta characterized this staunch support for and commitment to Taiwan’s security and the peace and stability of the Taiwan Strait. As a responsible member of the Indo-Pacific region and international community, Taiwan will continue to actively strengthen its self-defense capabilities and deepen the Taiwan-US security partnership. Cooperating closely with like-minded nations, it will jointly safeguard peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait; uphold freedom, openness, and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region; and defend the rules-based international order.