Washington/Hong Kong: The US has announced sanctions against Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam and 10 others. ‘US President Donald Trump has adopted a firm stand of acting against the leaders and officials muzzling the freedoms of the people of Hong Kong. And we have taken the decision accordingly,’ Pompeo said. Last month, President Trump signed the executive orders to revoke the special status of Hong Kong. The US President also approved the law, which will treat Hong Kong as a part of China under ‘One Country, One System’ and allow sanctioning Hong Kong and Chinese leaders and officials.
The sanctions US State Secretary announced last week are in line with the Hong Kong Autonomy Act. ‘The sanctions target 11 people, which include Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam, Commissioner of Police Chris Tang Ping-keung and head of China’s liaison office in Hong Kong, Luo Huining. All properties and assets in the US of the officials will be frozen. The Chinese regime and the UK had assured autonomy to Hong Kong. However, it is now clear that the Chinese Communist Party is not going to keep this promise. Therefore, President Trump has taken a firm stand and said that the US would treat Hong Kong under ‘One Country, One System’ henceforth. We will take action against the individuals crushing the freedoms and rights of the people of Hong Kong,’ said Pompeo as he announced the sanctions.
A severe reaction has emerged from China over the sanctions. The Hong Kong Government labelled the decision a ‘measure which represents blatant and barbaric interference in China’s internal affairs, using Hong Kong as a pawn.’ On the other hand, the head of China’s liaison office in Hong Kong, Luo Huining slammed the move and said, ‘If the US believes it can force China to compromise with the measure, they made the wrong move.’
Last month, China began imposing the Hong Kong National Security Law. As per the law, any act against China will be deemed as unlawful or anti-national and has the provision for life imprisonment to such offenders. Also, the Hong Kongers arrested as per the provisions of the law, will not be subject to the local laws of Hong Kong. Associated agencies have been given the power to run trials for such cases secretly. China’s recently imposed national security law had sparked reactions from Hong Kong as well as the international community.