Sep 12, 2020 - World

China sets new retaliatory restrictions on U.S. diplomats

Xi Jingping
Chinese President Xi Jinping. Photo: Kevin Frayer/Getty Images

China on Friday enacted fresh restrictions on U.S. diplomats working in mainland China and Hong Kong as tensions between the two countries continue to rise, AP reports.

The state of play: A statement from the Chinese foreign ministry framed the move as a direct rebuke of similar restrictions America put on Chinese diplomats last year. The statement noted that the rules pertain to senior diplomats and other personnel at the U.S. embassy in Beijing as well as consulates in China, per the Guardian.

  • Though China shared few details on its latest restrictions, U.S. rules enacted in 2019 require Chinese diplomats in the U.S. to report travel and meetings to American authorities.
  • The U.S. guidance now requires that Chinese diplomats also obtain permission for such travel or meetings.

What they're saying: "Once again we urge the U.S. side to immediately correct its mistakes and lift the unreasonable restrictions imposed on the Chinese Embassy and consulates and their staff," an unnamed foreign ministry spokesperson wrote.

  • The statement noted that the unspecified restrictions may be lifted if the U.S. reverses its own.
  • The spokesperson did say that China supported “normal exchanges and cooperation between all sectors of the two countries.”
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