China Says Reserves Right to Respond to Australia's New Polices on Hong Kong

© AFP 2022 / FREDERIC J. BROWNThe national flags of Australia and China are displayed before a portrait of Mao Zedong facing Tiananmen Square, during a visit by Australia's Prime Minister Julia Gillard in Beijing on April 26, 2011
The national flags of Australia and China are displayed before a portrait of Mao Zedong facing Tiananmen Square, during a visit by Australia's Prime Minister Julia Gillard in Beijing on April 26, 2011 - Sputnik International
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MOSCOW (Sputnik) - China reserves the right to respond to Australia’s new policies of extending immigration options for Hong Kong residents and halting its extradition agreement with the region, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Zhao Lijian said on Thursday.

"China does not accept this and expresses strong condemnation while reserving the rights to make further responses. Australia needs to bear all the consequences because of this," Zhao said during a regular press briefing.

China's reaction followed a statement by Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who announced new policies to offer assistance to Hong Kong residents after Beijing introduced the new national security law in the city.

Australia has decided to extend visas for some categories of Hong Kong passport holders and has announced the suspension of an extradition treaty with the region.

A man looks at books in a public library in Hong Kong on July 4, 2020. - Sputnik International
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In response to the new national security law, a number of countries, including the United Kingdom and Canada, took similar actions to offer assistance to Hong Kong residents.

Beijing and the local government in Hong Kong argued that the new law only serves the purpose of safeguarding China's national security.

But a large number of countries in the West views the new law as undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy, which Beijing pledged under the joint statement with the United Kingdom in 1984.

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