WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Lawmakers are sounding the alarm after the CIA confirmed that China may be considering sending lethal arms to Russia.
This warning by the Biden Administration comes ahead of a meeting between the two countries. On Tuesday, the Pentagon said China has yet to take the option off of the table.
“Let’s not forget about the consequences if they do, it will extend this conflict needlessly, it will result in more innocent lives lost,” Air Force Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder said. “It’s something we’re going to closely monitor.”
At a hearing focused on Chinese economic threats, Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) said the U.S. must work to constrain China’s aggression.
“We are living in one of the most dangerous periods in American foreign policy in a generation,” he said.
U.S. State Department official Daniel Kritenbrink told lawmakers that China’s interest in helping Russia is not new and has been helping the country in the war in Ukraine since it first began over a year ago. He said the U.S.’s goal now is to stop China from helping further.
“The secretary made very clear the consequences and implications if china were to provide lethal support,” Kritenbrink said.
The State Department has not disclosed exactly what those consequences might be but a Department of Commerce official said they’ve already penalized a dozen Chinese companies for aiding Russia.
“We’re looking at all third parties, especially China,” Department of Commerce Under Secretary Alan Estevez said.
The Chinese government has denied that it is considering sending lethal arms to Russia and maintains that the goal of next week’s meeting with a top Russian official is to promote peace.