The US State Department has approved the potential sale of three weapons systems to Taiwan, including sensors, missiles and artillery that could have a total value of $1.8bn, the Pentagon said on Wednesday, amid rising tension over the self-ruled island that China claims as its own. Al Jazeera reports that the formal notification gives Congress 30 days to object to any sales, but there is broad bipartisan support for the defence of Taiwan, meanwhile though the Chinese embassy did not immediately respond to a request for comment, China’s foreign ministry said last week that US arms sales to Taiwan severely damaged China’s sovereignty and security interests, urging Washington to cancel the planned sales and warning that China would “make a legitimate and necessary response according to how the situation develops”.