China condemns US diplomat's visit to Taiwan

China has denounced a US diplomat's joining the Palau president's delegation during its visit to Taiwan on Sunday.

Palau President Surangel Whipps Jr. chose Taiwan for his first overseas trip after taking office in January.

The US ambassador to Palau accompanied the president. Taiwan media reported that the envoy's visit marked the first time a US ambassador has publicly visited Taiwan since Washington cut ties with Taipei in 1979.

China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said on Monday that the Chinese government is carefully monitoring the situation of the US ambassador being a member of the Palau president's delegation.

Zhao said the way of dealing with Taiwan is the most important and sensitive issue between China and the United States. He stressed that China firmly opposes official exchanges in any form between the US and Taiwan.

The spokesperson urged the US to stop official exchanges with Taiwan, and not to send the wrong signals to separatist forces seeking "Taiwan independence."