China’s gateway to West under threat
June 4, 2020 - U.S. President Donald Trump has vowed a strong response to China’s controversial national security legislation on Hong Kong.
On May 28, China’s National People’s Congress approved a bill to impose national security legislation in Hong Kong. The anti-sedition law will allow Chinese security agencies to operate in Hong Kong in a bid to stamp out pro-democracy protests that have racked Hong Kong since June 2019.
Lawmakers in the former British territory on June 4 also approved a contentious bill making it a crime to insult China’s national anthem, the March of the Volunteers.
Washington could strip the territory of U.S. preferential trade status. However, this could impact more than 1,300 U.S. companies and 85,000 American residents operating in Hong Kong. Beijing will likely retaliate by ending the current trade war truce.
Trump indicated that the United States could cancel visas of thousands of graduate students from Chinese universities tied to the People’s Liberation Army.
Trump also called for sanctions against Hong Kong individuals involved in efforts to suppress protests, as well as officials in mainland China, including members of the powerful Politburo.
The State Department is also reportedly planning restrictions on state-run Chinese media outlets on American soil. These include CCTV, the top state-owned network, and China News Service, the country’s second-largest state-owned news agency.
In February, the Trump administration slapped restrictions on five major media entities with U.S. operations: Xinhua News Agency, China Global Television Network, China Radio International, China Daily Distribution Corp. and Hai Tian Development USA, Inc.