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Iran Press TV

China: US sanctions over Hong Kong 'hysterical political bullying'

Iran Press TV

Tuesday, 08 December 2020 9:15 AM

China has condemned the new US sanctions against top Chinese legislators over their alleged role in devising Hong Kong's national security law, describing the bans as "hysterical political bullying."

In a statement on Tuesday, the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of China's State Council also expressed "strong indignation and condemnation" at the US State Department decision to impose sanctions on 14 Standing Committee members of the Chinese legislature, the National People's Congress, Xinhua reported.

"The move totally violates international law and the basic norms governing international relations," the statement said, further slamming Washington's decision as "purely double-standards."

The development came after the hawkish US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed on Monday that the Chinese legislators were targeted for "developing, adopting, or implementing" China's national security law, which marked part of the measures adopted by Beijing to restore calm to the semi-autonomous city of Hong Kong after months of Western-backed, anti-government protests last year.

In a related development, Hong Kong police announced on Monday the arrest of eight individuals linked to illegal activities on the campus of Chinese University of Hong Kong, Xinhua reported.

The report further cited the department for safeguarding national security of the Hong Kong Police Force as describing those detained as male students, community workers, and district council members between the ages of 16 and 34.

"They are suspected of participating in an unauthorized assembly, and three of them were also suspected of inciting secession as they shouted and displayed 'Hong Kong independence' slogans," the police stated as quoted in the report, noting that "relevant evidence was obtained" prior to the arrests.

According to the report, a group of nearly 100 people initiated a protest rally on the university campus on November 19 under purported "dissatisfaction" with the school's decision to move its graduation ceremony online in response to epidemic prevention measures.

The protesters defaced and damaged properties and were suspected of inflicting "criminal damage," the report added.

Anti-government protests started in Hong Kong in June 2019 over a proposed extradition bill, which was later shelved. The demonstrations, however, continued for the next several months and became more violent, endangering the lives and property of local citizens. Protesters also called for Hong Kong's secession.

The national security law was introduced to avert secession and foreign interference.

China says the United States in particular incited the unrest in Hong Kong.

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