Speaking at a press conference in Washington D.C. on Friday, Burns said that China had conveyed its concerns to the United States through diplomatic channels.
“China has expressed some reservations about its capacity to conquer Taiwan,” Burns told reporters.
Burns went on to say that the CIA had been closely monitoring China’s military activities in the region, and that the agency had noticed a number of significant developments in recent months.
“China has been increasing its military presence in the Taiwan Strait, and we have seen a number of large-scale military exercises taking place in the region,” Burns said. “We are keeping a close eye on these developments, and we are taking steps to ensure that we have a clear understanding of China’s intentions.”
Burns also emphasized the importance of maintaining strong ties with Taiwan, which China considers to be a renegade province.
“We have a long-standing relationship with Taiwan, and we are committed to ensuring their security and prosperity,” Burns said. “We will continue to work closely with our allies in the region to ensure that we are prepared for any eventuality.”
The remarks from the CIA Director come amid heightened tensions between China and Taiwan, with China stepping up its military activities in the region and Taiwan increasing its defense capabilities.
The United States has long been a key ally of Taiwan, and has provided military and diplomatic support to the island nation in the face of pressure from China. The Biden administration has also pledged to continue this support, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken reaffirming the United States’ commitment to Taiwan during his confirmation hearing last month.