Beijing imposed sanctions on 28 officials belonging to Trump’s former administration, including outgoing US secretary of state Mike Pompeo.
China’s Foreign Ministry released a statement just as Joe Biden was being sworn in as America’s new President, saying US politicians had ‘selfish political interests’ along with ‘prejudice and hatred against China’.
“The Chinese government is firmly resolved to defend China’s national sovereignty, security and development interests. China has decided to sanction 28 persons who have seriously violated China’s sovereignty and who have been mainly responsible for such U.S. moves on China-related issues,” the foreign ministry said.
“These individuals and their immediate family members are prohibited from entering the mainland, Hong Kong and Macao of China. They and companies and institutions associated with them are also restricted from doing business with China,” it added.
This development came just a day after Donald Trump’s administration released a hefty statement accusing China of carrying out genocide against Muslim Uighurs in the northwestern Xinjiang region.
“I have determined that the People’s Republic of China is committing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang, China, targeting Uyghur Muslims and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups,” Pompeo said on Twitter.
Relations between US and China have plummeted significantly under Trump’s administration as it adopted a hardline approach against the country. Joe Biden holds a similar stance against China, with his director of national intelligence supporting an ‘aggressive stance’ towards the country.