In response to US President Donald Trump administration’s ‘punishment’ of imposing visa restrictions on Chinese politicians, Beijing has said that it would also impose mirroring restrictions on the entry of certain American individuals with “egregious conduct” on issues related to Hong Kong. Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian announced the restrictions in a press briefing as a response to a reporter’s question about America’s move over China’s legislation on Hong Kong which according to critics limits the autonomous nature of the former British colony.
According to an international media agency, Zhao told the reporters that the US “will never succeed” in its attempt to obstruct China’s legislation on the city which according to the Asian superpower is aimed at safeguarding the national security. While US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on June 26 that entry of Chinese Political Party’s officers who are responsible for the controversial bill will be barred, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said that ‘China has decided to impose visa restrictions on U.S. individuals with egregious conduct on Hong Kong-related issues’.
President @realDonaldTrump promised to punish the CCP officials responsible for eviscerating Hong Kong’s freedoms. Today, we are taking action to do just that– we've announced visa restrictions on CCP officials responsible for undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy and human rights.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) June 26, 2020
US visa restrictions applicable to “current and former” officials of China’s ruling Communist Party were announced a day after United States Senate approved a bill that would impose mandatory sanctions on people as well as firms supporting the government’s efforts of threatening Hong Kong’s autonomy. The bill includes secondary sanctions on banks that deal with any individual who is backing the CCP’s new security law or some other crackdown on the former British colony’s autonomy. However, Zhao has reportedly said that Beijing has filed a complaint against the US bill and even warned that it will reply with strong countermeasures.
Previously, Pompeo had said that America’s treatment of Hong Kong will depend on how the Chinese Community Party witnesses the former British colony. While delivering his keynote address at Copenhagen Democracy Summit 2020 on June 20, Pompeo had clarified that the US will treat Hong Kong as a Chinese city instead of an autonomous one and US will “move away” from any separate agreements with the city. This came after China approved the draft of national security bill on the city that according to critics including America, threatens the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ rule that Hong Kong came under China’s leadership back in 1997.