"They are playing with fire," China warns the United States

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China has warned that the United States is "playing with fire" after President Joe Biden said Washington would defend Taiwan militarily if the self-governing island was attacked by Beijing.

The Taiwan State Bureau of State Affairs said Monday that the United States was "using the 'Taiwan card' to contain China and that it would burn itself out."

The state-run Xinhua newspaper quoted Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhu Fenglian as saying that it was urging the United States to "stop any remarks or actions that violate" the principles previously established between Beijing and Washington.

Speaking from Tokyo during a trip to Asia, Biden had responded with a vague "yes" when asked by reporters if the US would be "militarily involved" in defending Taiwan if attacked by China.

"This is the commitment we have made," Biden said.

Beijing still claims Taiwan, whose official name is the Republic of China, as a province and has not ruled out the possibility of uniting the two sides by force, writes Al Jazeera.

Despite having no formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan, the US describes the island as a "partner". It also sells arms to Taiwan and has strong trade relations with the island.21Media