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European Union imposed sanctions on Chinese Officials: China retaliates

TBL web desk

Latest development after US-China meet at Alaska comes from European allies of United States in which several Western countries (The Council of Europe) has imposed sanctions on four Chinese officials accused of rights abuses against the mostly Muslim Uighur minority group.

This action is considered as coordinated effort by the European Union, UK, Canada and the US. The sanctions agreed on Monday mark the EU’s first punitive measures on Beijing since it imposed an arms embargo in 1989 after the Tiananmen Square massacre.

The four targeted Chinese officials are: Chen Mingguo, director of the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau; senior officials Wang Mingshan and Wang Junzheng and the former head of the Xinjiang region, Zhu Hailun.

These four will be banned from Travelling within the borders of European Union. Their assets in the bloc frozen and no European citizens and company permitted to provide them with financial assistance.

Chinese Response

In a quick response to these Western sanctions, Asian giant China hit back with tit-for-tat countermeasures by sanctioning 10 individuals and four entities by accusing them of spreading  rumours and lies about Xinjiang.

The Chinese government sanctioned 10 individuals including Reinhard Bütikofer, chair of the European Parliament’s delegation for relations with China, and Michael Gahler, chair of the European Parliament-Taiwan Friendship Group, in addition to some members of the European Parliament affiliated with the parliaments of EU member countries such as Germany, Belgium, Lithuania and the Netherlands.

The individuals concerned and their families are prohibited from entering the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong and Macao, according to the Chinese authorities. And the companies and institutions associated with them are also restricted from doing business with China.

Entities including the Political and Security Committee of the Council of the European Union, Subcommittee on Human Rights of the European Parliament, the Mercator Institute for China Studies in Germany, and the Alliance of Democracies Foundation in Denmark were also sanctioned by the Chinese government.

“Cannot simply look the other way”: Dominic Raab

UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the abuse of the Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang was “one of the worst human rights crises of our time” and the international community “cannot simply look the other way”.

He said the treatment of Uighurs amounted to “appalling violations of the most basic human rights”.

China at first denied the existence of the camps for detaining Uighurs, a mostly Muslim minority, in Xinjiang but has since described them as centres to provide job training and reeducate those exposed to radical thinking.

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