China has announced sanctions against US officials and entities, including two senators, in retaliation for Washington’s sanctions against senior Beijing figures over alleged human rights abuses against the Uighur Muslim minority.
Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Monday disclosed what she called “corresponding sanctions” against American senators Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, US Representative Chris Smith, Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback and the Congressional-Executive Commission on China.
The commission monitors human rights and the development of the rule of law in China and submits an annual report to President Donald Trump and Congress.
“The US actions seriously interfere in China’s internal affairs, seriously violate the basic norms of international relations and seriously damage Sino-US relations,” she told reporters during a daily briefing.
“China will make further responses based on how the situation develops.”
Hua did not elaborate on what the sanctions entailed, but Washington’s measures against Chinese officials, including the Communist Party secretary of the troubled western region of Xinjiang, included freezing of American assets, US travel and prohibiting business with them.
UN experts and activists say at least a million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims are held in detention centres in Xinjiang. China describes them as training centres helping to stamp out terrorism and extremism and giving people new skills.