British Prime Minister Liz Truss attends a news conference in London


  • Liz Truss urged Taiwan to stand up against the "aggressive bully" China instead of negotiating
  • Truss claimed any negotiation with China did not produce results, citing the U.K.'s experience
  • Truss called the Chinese government "totalitarian" and "overrides international agreements"

Former British Prime Minister Liz Truss is not confident negotiations between Taiwan and China would ease tensions across the strait.

In an interview with Taiwan's state-owned Central News Agency (CNA), Truss said she believes the self-ruled island should stand up against Chinese aggression instead of negotiating with them.

"I think when you are facing a threat from an aggressive bully, then you need to stand up to them, and you need to show strength," Truss said.

"I think that is important in the approach because I don't see that engagement with China or negotiation with China has achieved any results," the U.K.'s ex-prime minister added.

Truss cited the U.K.'s negotiations with China regarding the handover of Hong Kong as an example.

The former Conservative leader noted that the U.K. tried to negotiate with China to protect the civil liberties of the people in Hong Kong. But Beijing insisted on imposing its controversial National Security Law, which led to arrests and incarceration of human rights and democracy advocates.

"I don't believe the actions of China have shown that they live by the promises they make," Truss said.

When Truss was asked about her thoughts about being labeled an anti-China politician, the former British leader argued that she still admires the country's culture, history and philosophy.

However, Truss said the world faces a "totalitarian regime run by the Chinese Communist Party" that "overrides international agreements," Focus Taiwan reported.

Truss is in Taiwan for a five-day visit, making her the first former U.K. prime minister to set foot in 27 years since Margaret Thatcher visited the island in 1996.

During her visit to the island, Truss gave a speech at a forum organized by the Taiwanese government-funded Prospect Foundation, where she warned the West against appeasing China just to prevent possible cross-strait tensions.

Truss urged the West to "support free democracies like Taiwan" and take action against China.

Truss also lashed out at European leaders by calling them "completely irresponsible" for their lack of support for Taiwan, insisting that the island is a "core interest" of Europe.

The former U.K. prime minister also used the speech to urge her successor, Rishi Sunak, to keep trade and economic talks between London and Beijing on ice and close down Confucius Institutes across the country.

But Truss' Taiwan visit angered China, with its embassy in London calling the former British leader's trip a "dangerous political show which will do nothing but harm to the United Kingdom."

China held three days of military exercises in response to Taiwan's president meeting with the US House speaker