Beijing denounces US shutdown of its consulate in Houston

Beijing, Jul 22 (efe-epa).- China denounced Wednesday that the United States has demanded the immediate closure of its consulate general in the American city of Houston (Texas), the Foreign Ministry of the Asian country reported, considering the measure a provocation ” without precedents.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said today that “the United States has called for the immediate cessation of all operations of the consulate from July 24,” which is “a violation of international norms and agreements. consular issues between the two countries, as well as an attempt to undermine bilateral relations. ”

“We ask the US to retract this erroneous decision, or else China will take legitimate and necessary retaliation,” said Wang, adding that closing the consulate “in such a short period of time” implies “a unprecedented increase in the actions that country has carried out against China. ”

Beijing denounces the closure of the consulate a day after the US accused its intelligence services of supporting cyber attacks by two Chinese ‘hackers’ against companies from 11 countries to try to steal vaccine data for COVID-19 and secrets. of military technology. To date, this has been the latest episode in the increase in tension between the two countries.

“For a time, the United States has been trying to blame China through stigmatization and unwarranted attacks on the Chinese social system. They harass Chinese diplomats and staff who work at consulates; intimidate and interrogate Chinese students there. , and they even confiscate their electronic devices. They even detain them without charging them,” Wang added.

He also assured that “the Chinese diplomatic missions in the United States are dedicated to promoting understanding and friendship between the people of both countries.”

“However, our embassy in the US has even received bomb threats, and death threats have also come to diplomatic personnel,” said Wang.

On the contrary, he argued that “the personnel of the American embassy in China do not stop infiltrating and interfering, as well as attacking” the Asian country.

“We ask for reciprocity. The reality is that the US has far more personnel and diplomatic missions in China than vice versa,” he added.

Meanwhile, US media such as the Fox network denounced today that “documents and other materials are being burned in the courtyard of the consulate,” while the Chinese press foresees a “earthquake” in the bilateral ties, according to experts quoted anonymously by the newspaper Global Times.

This medium raises on Twitter the possibility of China closing a US consulate in China in response, explicitly citing the options of Hong Kong, Macao, Canton or Chengdu.

The background to the differences between the two powers is the underlying fight for hegemony, the technological and commercial war and, more recently, the exchange of accusations about the origin of the current coronavirus pandemic, on account of the new security law for Hong Kong or the human rights situation of Muslim minorities in the northwestern Chinese region of Xinjiang. EFE-EPA


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