US suspends extradition, tax agreements with Hong Kong as China imposes national security laws

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Picture Supply : AP

Rain droplets line a railing alongside the waterfront of Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020. Hurricane Higos weakened to a robust topical storm after making landfall in Zhuhai metropolis on Wednesday morning on China’s southern coast. (AP Picture/Vincent Yu)

The Trump administration on Wednesday suspended or terminated three bilateral agreements with Hong Kong overlaying extradition and tax exemptions, the newest in a sequence of U.S. strikes in response to China’s imposition of strict nationwide safety legal guidelines over the previous British territory. “The Chinese language Communist Get together selected to crush the freedoms and autonomy of the folks of Hong Kong,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted.

The State Division cited Beijing’s violation of its pledge for Hong Kong to retain broad autonomy for 50 years after its 1997 reversion to Chinese language rule. 

President Donald Trump already had decided that Hong Kong was now not eligible for the continued preferential therapy it loved from the U.S. The three agreements cowl the give up of fugitives, switch and convicted prisoners and reciprocal tax exemptions on revenue from worldwide delivery.

“These steps underscore our deep concern concerning Beijing’s choice to impose the Nationwide Safety Regulation, which has crushed the freedoms of the folks of Hong Kong,” State Division spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus mentioned in an announcement.

She mentioned Hong Kong authorities had been notified earlier Wednesday of the selections that had been the results of the Chinese language Communist Get together’s “drastic steps to erode the excessive diploma of autonomy that Beijing itself promised” to Hong Kong.

It was not instantly clear which of the agreements had been suspended and which had been formally ended, though different Western nations which have taken related actions have suspended their extradition treaties with Hong Kong.

The administration has already acted to finish particular commerce and business privileges that Hong Kong had loved and has imposed sanctions on Hong Kong and Chinese language officers, together with Hong Kong’s pro-China chief Carrie Lam, concerned in imposing the brand new safety regulation.

Beijing had promised Hong Kong 50 years of a “one-country, two-systems” association granting town its personal customs territory and authorized system after the 1997 handover. They had been underpinned by Western-style civil liberties, reminiscent of the precise to public dissent, which are not often allowed on the Chinese language mainland and are actually strictly restricted in Hong Kong.

“President Trump has made clear that the US will, due to this fact, deal with Hong Kong as ‘one nation, one system’ and take motion in opposition to people who’ve crushed the freedoms of the folks of Hong Kong,” Ortagus mentioned within the assertion.

Wednesday’s actions are the newest in a string of actions the administration has taken focusing on China as tensions between the 2 nations rise over commerce, expertise, Taiwan, Tibet, the South China Sea and the coronavirus pandemic. The impression of the tensions has been felt within the tit for tat closures of diplomatic missions in addition to visa restrictions on college students and journalists.

The newest U.S. steps additionally come as Trump assigns full blame to Beijing for the coronavirus outbreak within the U.S., deflecting criticism of his personal dealing with of the pandemic that threatens his reelection.

Additionally Learn | Trump says he was elected as president as Obama didn’t do an excellent job

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