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U.S. begins to pare back Hong Kong's special status

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U.S. begins to pare back Hong Kong's special status

 

2020-06-29T223158Z_2_LYNXMPEG5S213_RTROPTP_4_USA-POMPEO.JPG

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo gives a news conference about dealings with China and Iran, and on the fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Washington, U.S., June 24, 2020. Mangel Ngan/Pool via REUTERS

 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States began eliminating Hong Kong's special status under U.S. law on Monday, halting defense exports and restricting the territory's access to high technology products as China prepares new Hong Kong security legislation.

 

The U.S. move comes as the top decision-making body of China's parliament deliberates a draft national security law for Hong Kong that pro-democracy activists in the city fear will be used to eliminate dissent and tighten Beijing's control.

 

"The Chinese Communist Party's decision to eviscerate Hong Kong's freedoms has forced the Trump administration to re-evaluate its policies toward the territory," U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.

 

The Chinese embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

 

Last month, President Donald Trump responded to China's plans for the security law by saying he was initiating a process to eliminate special economic treatment that has allowed Hong Kong to remain a global financial center since its handover by Britain in 1997.

 

Trump stopped short of calling for an immediate end to privileges, but said the moves would affect the full range of U.S. agreements with Hong Kong, from an extradition treaty to export controls on dual-use technologies and more "with few exceptions."

 

The Commerce Department said it was suspending "preferential treatment to Hong Kong over China, including the availability of export license exceptions," adding that further actions to eliminate Hong Kong's status were being evaluated.

 

In 2018, $432.7 million of goods were shipped to Hong Kong under a Commerce Department exception, mostly relating to encryption, software and technology.

 

Pompeo said the United States, effective Monday, was ending exports of defense equipment to Hong Kong and will also take steps to end the export of dual-use technologies to the territory. Dual-use technologies have both commercial and military uses.

 

Last year, the Department of State approved approximately $2.4 million worth of controlled defense articles and services to Hong Kong government authorities, of which approximately $1.4 million worth was shipped, according State Department records.

 

"The United States is forced to take this action to protect U.S. national security. We can no longer distinguish between the export of controlled items to Hong Kong or to mainland China," Pompeo said.

 

The announcements come at a time of intensified U.S. rhetoric against Beijing as President Donald Trump campaigns for re-election. Opinion polls have shown voters increasingly embittered toward China, especially over the coronavirus, which began there.

 

(Reporting by Chris Sanders, Lisa Lambert, Mike Stone and David Brunnstrom; additional reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Chris Reese and Tom Brown)

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2020-06-30
 
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11 hours ago, webfact said:

Trump stopped short of calling for an immediate end to privileges

Looks like the world greatest deal maker has been checkmate by China fulfilling just 25% of the phase 1 trade deal.

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A troll post has been removed. 

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Hong Kong was special; now it's not. 

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12 hours ago, Deli said:

I only hope that Hong Kong people will receive same attention as all the BLM lefties and rioters.

Will people stop buying Made in China and burn Chinese flags ?

Yeah, will the Trump campaign stop selling "Made in China" merchandise?

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7 hours ago, heybruce said:

Yeah, will the Trump campaign stop selling "Made in China" merchandise?

Hope so but difficult to avoid their merchandise .  They should also be made to pay compensation to the globe for the broken economies caused by the covid 19 virus that was created in China by which ever means and their attempted cover up which delayed earlier action by other countries and cost thousands of lives . 

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