Donald Trump suspends special privileges to Hong Kong; China warns 'will definitely hit back'

Updated: Jul 16, 2020, 09:38 IST | Agencies | Washington

The US President said the law gives his administration powerful new tools to hold responsible the individuals in the entities involved in extinguishing Hong Kong's freedom

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump signed into law the Hong Kong Autonomy Act on Tuesday and also signed an executive order ending US preferential treatment for Hong Kong, "to hold China accountable for its oppressive actions against the people of Hong Kong".

Trump said the law gives his administration powerful new tools to hold responsible the individuals in the entities involved in extinguishing Hong Kong's freedom.

"We have all watched what happened, not a good situation. Their freedom has been taken away, their rights have been taken away and with it goes Hong Kong in my opinion, because it will no longer be able to compete with free markets. A lot of people will be leaving Hong Kong I suspect and we are going to do a lot more business because of it because we just lost one competitor.

"We lost a very, very serious competitor, a competitor that we incentivised to take a lot of business and do well, and we gave them a lot of business by doing what we did. We gave them things that nobody else had the right to do and that gave them a big edge over other markets, and because of that edge, they have some really historic business, tremendous business, far bigger than anybody would have thought years ago when we did this gift. It was really a gift to freedom," Trump said.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying warned the US to not implement the law. "We urge the US side to correct its mistake, not to implement the so-called 'Hong Kong Autonomy Act' and immediately stop meddling in Hong Kong affairs and China's internal affairs in any way," she said.

"This act smears our law on safeguarding national security in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region . If the US insists on going on the wrong path, China will definitely hit back". "This US move has grossly interfered in China's internal affairs and seriously violated international law, and the basic norms governing international relations," she said.

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