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China retaliates after U.S. sanctions, restricts diplomatic travel to Hong Kong

The U.S. imposed a fresh round of sanctions on Monday

The U.S. and Chinese flags
The U.S. and Chinese flags
(Fred Dufour / Getty Images)
Updated: December 10, 2020 - 4:39pm

China retaliated Thursday for recently imposed U.S. sanctions over Hong Kong, limiting American diplomatic travel to the Chinese-controlled territory.

A spokesperson for the Chinese government said U.S. diplomats will no longer receive visa-free entry privileges to Hong Kong or neighboring Macao.

The spokesperson also said the restrictions were imposed "given that the U.S. side is using the Hong Kong issue to seriously interfere in China’s internal affairs and undermine China’s core interests."

The Trump administration has imposed sanction on China, run by the Chinese Communist Party, for enacting measures limiting pro-democracy efforts in Hong Kong. 

"China once again urges the U.S. side to immediately stop meddling in Hong Kong affairs, stop interfering in China’s internal affairs, and not go further down the wrong and dangerous path," Hua continued. 

In a recent editorial from China's state-run Xinhua News Agency, the paper wrote administration is "digging a hole" for its successors by targeting Chinese officials. The editorial claimed that restricting the visas of the 92 million members of the Chinese Communist party and their families is a move that "exposed the sinister intentions of extreme anti-China forces in Washington to hijack China-U.S. relations for their own political gain."

Official U.S. policy toward China has grown increasingly hostile over the last year as the president and State Department routinely reprimand the CCP for its treatment of Taiwan, Tibet, Hong Kong, the Uyghur people in Xinjiang, and the country's military activities in the South China Sea.

Chinese officials and diplomats have had their visa privileged revoked or lessened, and an increased number of sanctions have been placed on Chinese journalists and academics.