China says Lithuania shall be swept into 'trashcan of history' if they continue to stand with Taiwan's 'separatist forces'

Sharp words.

Kayla Wong | December 23, 2021, 05:47 PM

Follow us on Telegram for the latest updates:

Lithuania will "eventually end up in the trashcan of history" if they insist on "colluding with Taiwan independence separatist forces and going further down the dark path", Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said at a press conference on Monday, Dec. 20.

"Nothing good" will come from Lithuania's move

Lithuania has "openly created the false impression of 'one China, one Taiwan' in the world" and violated the one-China principle that is "a basic norm government international relations", Zhao said.

"The move is bound to be disdained and rejected," he added.

"Lithuania broke faith and stood on the opposite side of what is right and just. Nothing good will come out of this."

Souring of ties between China and Lithuania

Following Lithuania's move to allow a Taiwanese Representative Office to open in November, Beijing has downgraded its diplomatic ties with the Baltic country and suspended its consular services there.

Lithuania then said on Dec. 3 that China had blocked all its imports over the matter of Taiwan, a self-ruled island that China considers as its territory.

China also reportedly gave an ultimatum to multinationals to cut ties with Lithuania, or lose access to the lucrative Chinese market, according to Reuters.

When the European Union requested to discuss with China the alleged trade block, China turned down requests for meetings, citing Covid-19 as the reason, Bloomberg reported.

Thereafter, on Dec. 15, as a sign of further deterioration of ties, Lithuania reportedly withdrew its diplomatic delegation from China for "consultations" due to supposed "intimidation".

It was described as the worst crisis in relations between China and a European state since 1981 when the Chinese ambassador to the Netherlands was recalled after the sale of Dutch submarines to Taiwan.

Previously, Beijing recalled its ambassador from Lithuania on Aug. 10, and expelled Lithuania's from Beijing.

It also asked Vilnius to recall its ambassador from Beijing, which Vilnius went on to do on Sep. 3.

Lithuania urges Taiwan to accept agricultural products

Amid the economic sanctions from China, Lithuania's agriculture ministry has asked Taipei to speed up import permissions for agricultural products, Taipei Times reported.

Antanas Venckus, head of the ministry's International Affairs and Export Promotion Department, said Taiwanese authorities have been working to help Lithuanian companies redirect their agricultural shipments to Taiwan instead.

He further said the country had not intended to negatively impact its relations with China.

"Normally, we do not mix politics with the economy, but we understand that in authoritarian countries, everything is mixed together and it's a pity that businesspeople are paying quite a high price," he said, adding that no one is blaming the government for this development with China.

Lithuania has a long history of standing up to what they perceived as foreigners bullying them, notably Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union, which annexed the country in 1940.

Along with a strong belief in democratic values and civil liberties for its people, this is probably why the small nation of just 2.8 million population -- Global Times previously mocked the country as "crazy" and "tiny" -- dared to make friends with Taiwan and stand up to a major power like China when other Western countries are not willing to do so.

Follow and listen to our podcast here

Top image adapted via Chinese foreign ministry & Getty Images