(Law (not: Lam) in the 1st sentence of the 4th paragraph; in addition, an unnecessary word fragment was deleted in the 1st sentence of the last paragraph – it says at the end on (not: appeared))
HONG KONG / WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) – Hong Kong has heavily criticized the US sanctions against the head of government of the Chinese special administrative region, Carrie Lam. A government spokesman described the recent punitive measures against Lam and ten other people on Saturday as “shameless and hideous”. He accused the United States of “hypocrisy”. The government of the city of 7.5 million, a former British crown colony, will support all countermeasures taken by the Chinese central government against the United States.
The United States announced the latest sanctions in the dispute over the restriction of Hong Kong’s autonomy on Friday. According to the Treasury Department, the names of Lams and ten other people can be found on a list that was used to freeze assets. Americans are no longer allowed to do business with them. US Health Secretary Alex Azar arrived on Sunday for a visit to diplomatically isolated Taiwan, which could further exacerbate tensions between Washington and Beijing.
Hong Kong’s Prime Minister Lam was recently heavily criticized for the controversial postponement of the Hong Kong election by a year. “The government is afraid of losing the election, so it has changed the date,” said Nathan Law, one of the leaders of the democracy movement, the magazine “Der Spiegel”. At the same time, he called for more decisive action by Germany and Europe against the Chinese leadership.
Law, who lives in London, brought international recognition to Taiwan and a boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. In addition, companies could be ostracized whose products are made in China by forced laborers of the Muslim Uyghur minority. “There are a lot of tools, and Germany, as one of China’s largest trading partners, could play a crucial role in this debate.”
Lam had denied political motives for postponing the election. She justifies this with the risk of the coronavirus after the recent increase in new infections. The director of the Chinese Liaison Office in the Special Administrative Region, Luo Huining, who is on the sanctions list, also condemned the new punitive measures. He himself has no credit at all in the US, but can transfer $ 100 so that they can be frozen.
China passed a new security law for Hong Kong at the end of June and is therefore heavily criticized. Since the return of the British crown colony to China in 1997, Hong Kong has been governed autonomously with its own civil liberties. The law is the most far-reaching encroachment on autonomy so far.
Health Secretary Azar is the highest-ranking member of the US government to visit Taiwan since the US entered into diplomatic relations with China in 1979. Beijing is upset that the communist leadership sees the island as part of the People’s Republic. According to their “one China doctrine”, no state that maintains diplomatic relations with Beijing is actually allowed to maintain official contacts with Taiwan.
Meanwhile, in the scramble over the future of the Chinese video app Tiktok, another player appeared on the scene. According to a report in the “Wall Street Journal”, the short message service Twitter is also interested. The Chinese Tiktok owner Bytedance is currently negotiating under massive pressure from the White House with Microsoft to take over the business in the USA and several other countries. The time window is limited: US President Donald Trump decreed a ban on business with Bytedance on Thursday, which should take effect in mid-September./blu/rhk/sok/DP/he