U.S. sanctions 24 Hong Kong and Chinese officials ahead of Blinken's key meeting

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Rebecca Falconer
·2 min read
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Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced late Tuesday sanctions for 24 more Chinese and Hong Kong officials for further curtailing democracy in the Asian financial hub.

Why it matters: Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan are due to meet this week in Alaska with senior Chinese officials in the first face-to-face discussions between diplomats from the U.S. and China since President Biden took office.

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Driving the news: The sanctions were introduced under the Hong Kong Autonomy Act and signed into law by then-President Trump last July over a national security law Beijing imposed on the former British colony.

  • Blinken said in a statement the latest sanctions were designed to underscore "our deep concern" at China's legislature passing a resolution last week for more control over the city's elections — which he said would "unilaterally undermine Hong Kong’s electoral system."

What they're saying: "This action further undermines the high degree of autonomy promised to people in Hong Kong and denies Hong Kongers a voice in their own governance, a move that the United Kingdom has declared to be a breach of the Sino-British Joint Declaration," Blinken said.

  • "A stable, prosperous Hong Kong that respects human rights, freedoms, and political pluralism serves the interests of Hong Kong, mainland China, and the broader international community.

  • "The United States stands united with our allies and partners in speaking out for the rights and freedoms of people in Hong Kong, and we will respond when [China] fails to meet its obligations."

Of note: Among those named on the updated sanctions list are Tam Yiu-chung, the Hong Kong congressional delegate who drafted the National Security Law.

Go deeper: White House expects a tough first meeting with China in Alaska

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