03:46 GMT +318 August 2019
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    In this Nov. 7, 2012 photo, US and Chinese national flags are hung outside a hotel during the U.S. Presidential election event, organized by the US embassy in Beijing

    Beijing’s Reaction to US Shift on 'One China' Policy Could be Significant

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    If President-elect Donald Trump decides to change the United States’ longstanding "one China" policy, he should consider the repercussions of such a move, according to outgoing US President Barack Obama.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – If President-elect Donald Trump decides to change the United States’ longstanding "one China" policy, he should consider the repercussions of such a move, President Barack Obama said at a news conference.

    "The idea of ‘one China’ is at the heart of their conception as a nation," Obama told reporters Friday. "If you are going to upend this understanding, you have to have thought through what the consequences are. [Chinese] reaction on this issue could end up being very significant."

    The outgoing president stressed the importance of stable relations between Washington and Beijing and said disputes would disadvantage both countries.

    Obama added that he has advised Trump to assemble his administration first, before interacting with foreign government officials.

    At the same time, Obama conceded that US foreign policy should be "subject to fresh eyes."

    Concern over US relations with China and Taiwan has risen since Trump became the first US president or president-elect to speak with a Taiwanese leader in an official capacity since 1979. Trump and Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen spoke by phone on December 2, with the incoming president later insisting on Twitter that he hadn’t initiated the call in which Tsai congratulated him on his November 8 election victory.

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