The former UK Prime Minister, Liz Truss, secretly lobbied the government to sell defense equipment to China. She requested the Business and Trade Secretary, Kemi Badenoch, to intervene on behalf of a defense manufacturer called Richmond Defence Systems. U.K. security officials had blocked the firm from exporting landmine disposal equipment to China, due to concerns it could be used in an invasion of Taiwan. Truss expressed urgency in expediting the license, despite her public stance as a China hawk. The letter threatened future sales and suggested China would reverse engineer the products if the license was not granted. However, experts and MPs say that her actions may have threatened national interests, including those of Taiwan. The decision to block the sale was also based on concerns about the equipment ending up in the hands of the Chinese government and being used in an invasion. Despite the rejection, the company has appealed and the case is still under review. The Secretary of State’s response to Truss’ letter highlights the need for careful consideration, indicating that some decisions take longer. The documents were obtained through Freedom of Information (FOI) requests and the Secretary of State’s office expressed regret over their release.

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