China’s President Xi Jinping has said that “reunification” with Taiwan “must be fulfilled”, as heightened tensions over the island continue.
Mr Xi said unification should be achieved peacefully, but warned that the Chinese people had a “glorious tradition” of opposing separatism.
In response, Taiwan said its future lay in the hands of its people.
Taiwan considers itself a sovereign state, while China views it as a breakaway province.
Beijing has not ruled out the possible use of force to achieve unification.
Mr Xi’s intervention comes after China sent a record number of military jets into Taiwan’s air defence zone in recent days. Some analysts say the flights could be seen as a warning to Taiwan’s president ahead of the island’s national day on Sunday.
Taiwan’s defence minister has said that tensions with China are at their worst in 40 years.
Editing by Tola Oguneye