China imposes sanctions on former US Commerce Secretary Ross, others
China has hit US-based institutions and individuals, including former Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, with retaliatory sanctions following recent American sanctions on Chinese officials in Hong Kong.
According to Press TV, Beijing’s punitive measure against Washington on Friday came just ahead a planned visit to China by US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman amid intensifying tensions between the world’s top economic giants.
Explaining the tit-for-tat move, China’s Foreign Ministry said, "The US side concocted the so-called Hong Kong business advisory, baselessly smeared Hong Kong's commercial environment, and illegally sanctioned Chinese officials in Hong Kong."
"These actions seriously violated international law and the basic principles of international relations, and seriously interfered in China's internal affairs," the ministry added in a Friday statement.
The ministry further declared that in addition to Ross, Beijing would sanction US-China Economic and Security Review Commission Chairman Carolyn Bartholomew, former Congressional-Executive Commission on China Staff Director Jonathan Stivers, DoYun Kim from the National Democratic Institute, International Republican Institute Associate Director Adam King, Human Rights Watch China Director Sophie Richardson and the Hong Kong Democracy Council.
“Hong Kong affairs are purely China’s internal affairs. Any attempt by external forces to interfere in Hong Kong affairs is a mere stumbling block,” the statement emphasized.
Reacting to Beijing’s retaliatory move, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki insisted during her regular press briefing on Friday that Washington was "undeterred" by the Chinese sanctions, which came after Washington last week issued its business advisory for Hong Kong and imposed sanctions on more Chinese officials over what it claimed to be Beijing's crackdown on democracy in the former British colony.