Beijing on Thursday struck back at a US decision to revoke visas for more than 1,000 Chinese students and researchers who were considered by the US government to be a security risk or had ties with China’s military.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said there was prejudice behind the visa decision.
According to the state-owned Global Times, according to a news briefing on Thursday, “the move was political persecution and racial discrimination that has severely violated the human rights of Chinese students.”
Beijing warned to reserve the right to take further action but did not elaborate.
The acting head of the Department of Homeland Security, Chad Wolf, accused China of misusing student visas to exploit American academics when it announced the visa on Wednesday, saying China was attempting to steal coronavirus research Was.
In July, the Department of Justice announced the indictment of two Chinese citizens in China for hacking people, governments, dissidents and private companies engaged in COVID-19 vaccine research. The indictment states that the hackers operated both for their own benefit and for the main Chinese intelligence service, the Ministry of State Security.
China has denied the allegations.
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A State Department spokesman told Reuters that the visa action was being taken under President May 29’s announcement by President Donald Trump in response to China’s restrictions on Hong Kong’s autonomy.
The proclamation, which took effect from June 1, targets an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 individuals associated with universities or institutions in China who, according to the US, acquire foreign technology to benefit the Chinese military.
Chinese students make up the largest share of international students in the US, with some 360,000 Americans attending schools annually, generating nearly $ 14 billion in revenue for colleges – though the COVID-19 epidemic severely severed the campus this fall. Is interrupted by.
China-US relations have plunged into new lows in recent months, with the world’s two largest economies colliding on issues ranging from trade and human rights to Hong Kong and Coronavirus.
Trump, who had friendly relations with Chinese President Xi Jinping, has made China an important part of his campaign for re-election on November 3, and accused his Democratic rival, Joe Biden, of being “soft” have put. Beijing
In the latest sign of sour ties, China’s state-owned People’s Daily newspaper on Wednesday refused to publish an opinion by the US ambassador to China, stating that the article did not meet its standards.
Reuters contributed to this report.