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Reports: US Will Not Sell Fighter Jets to Taiwan

Published reports say the White House had decided not to sell new F-16 fighter jets to Taiwan.

The Washington Post newspaper and other news agencies are reporting that the Obama administration is offering to refurbish Taiwan's aging fleet of F-16s in an arms package that does not include any new jets for the island.

Administration officials briefed Congressional staffers on the issue Friday, but no formal announcement has been made.

Republican Senator John Cornyn of Texas issued a statement Friday saying that if the reports are true, the decision is a capitulation to Communist China and a slap in the face to a strong ally and long-time friend.

China considers Taiwan to be a renegade province, and strongly opposes the sale of fighter jets to the island.

The White House announced in January of last year a $6.4 billion arms deal with Taiwan that included Patriot missiles, Black Hawk helicopters and parts for Taiwan's existing F-16 fleet, but no submarines, nor new fighter jets.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.