US, China clash anew as top officials meet on tensions - GulfToday

US, China clash anew as top officials meet on tensions


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The United States on Wednesday pressed China over its treatment of Uighur Muslims and Hong Kong as the two powers stood firm in high-level talks in Hawaii on soaring tensions.


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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with senior Chinese official Yang Jiechi at a Honolulu military base, in the two countries' highest-level meeting since the coronavirus pandemic sent tensions skyrocketing, a State Department official said.

They met away from media as excerpts came out from an explosive memoir by former US national security advisor John Bolton, who said President Donald Trump asked President Xi Jinping for assistance in his re-election.

Mike Pompeo
A file photograph shows US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo addressing the media in Washington,DC.

Just as Pompeo met Yang, Trump signed into law an act that authorizes sanctions for Chinese officials involved in the detention of some one million Uighur Muslims and other Turkic Muslims.

Beijing quickly responded that the law "maliciously attacks" China and threatened consequences.

China will "resolutely hit back and the US will bear the burden of all subsequent consequences," the Chinese foreign ministry said.

And Pompeo and his counterparts from the other Group of Seven major industrial democracies put out a joint statement voicing "grave concerns" about a draft security law in Hong Kong.

"We strongly urge the Government of China to reconsider this decision," said the joint statement by Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States.

China is moving ahead with a law that would prohibit subversion and other perceived offenses in the financial hub, to which Beijing promised autonomy before taking back the British colony in 1997.

In response, Yang said at the meeting with Pompeo that Beijing's "determination" to introduce the law was "unwavering", according to a statement on the foreign ministry website.

Yang said China "resolutely opposes the statement made by the G7 foreign ministers on Hong Kong-related issues," according to the statement.

Agence France-Presse

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