Taipei: Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said that China could start a conflict in the Taiwan Strait to distract attention from its domestic crises.

He said that if China's economy becomes stagnant, oppressed ethnic minorities become increasingly discontent, or an internal crisis occurs, China may stir up conflict in the strait as a distraction in an interview with ITV News, reported Taiwan News.

Joseph Wu also reiterated that Taiwan will strengthen self-defence capabilities whether China attacks or not and fully defend its territorial sovereignty and democratic way of life.

The foreign minister pointed out that as China is currently hosting the Winter Olympics, it may not launch an attack for the time being so as not to undermine its efforts at "claiming its national glory," reported Taiwan News.

However, it can be seen from its nearly 1,000 sorties into Taiwan's Air Defence Identification Zone in 2021 that China's intention to invade Taiwan has never gone away.

Wu said Taiwan has been extremely concerned about the situation in Hong Kong since Beijing passed the National Security Law in 2020. He remarked that Hong Kong's vanishing democracy, freedom, and human rights prove that "one country, two systems" is a lie, reported Taiwan News.

Taiwan is a sovereign country, and China's autocratic regime has never ruled it for a single day, he said, adding that the country is at the forefront of democracy's fight against authoritarianism.

Wu said Taiwan is happy to see its democratic partners placing great importance on peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and that he welcomes freedom of navigation in the strait and the East and South China Seas, reported Taiwan News.