President Donald Trump on Tuesday announced that he signed legislation and an executive order to punish China for interfering in Hong Kong affairs.
“We’ve all watched what happened, not a good situation, their freedom has been taken away,” Trump said referring to Hong Kong. “Their rights have been taking away.”
The bill proposes sanctions on Chinese officials after they passed a national security law for Hong Kong in July, criminalizing activities they defined as secession, subversion of state power, terrorism, and collusion with foreign entities. China’s new laws were widely seen as a way to crush recent protests for freedom in Hong Kong.
The president said his executive order would end Hong Kong’s special trading status, which would punish China’s economy.
“Hong Kong will be treated the same as mainland China,” Trump said. “No special privileges, no special economic treatment, and no export of sensitive technologies.”
The president noted that he would continue standing up to China, unlike former Vice President Joe Biden, who is now running against him for president.
“No administration has been tougher on China than this administration,” Trump said, referring to his decision to enact Chinese tariffs and his efforts to bock the state-backed telecom company Huawei from operating in allied countries.
Trump said that the United States would continue holding China accountable after they covered up the dangers of the coronavirus.
“Make no mistake, we hold China fully responsible for concealing the virus and unleashing it upon the world,” Trump said.