00:36 GMT16 January 2021
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    BEIJING (Sputnik) - Beijing condemns the US visa restrictions against Chinese officials and will adopt proper countermeasures, Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said Tuesday.

    "China firmly rejects it and urges the United States to immediately stop its erroneous practice and provide a level playing field for Chinese and other foreign companies. China will take all essential measures to uphold the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese businesses", Wang said at a press briefing as quoted by the ministry.

    The spokesman noted that under Pompeo the US visa policy has become weaponised as Washington is  constantly using it to pressure Chinese officials, citing the issues of Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet.

    "It severely interferes in China's internal affairs, impedes regular people-to-people exchange and undercuts China-U.S. relations", the spokesman added.

    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Monday new visa restrictions on Chinese officials suspected of being involved in the persecution of a wide array of people, including political dissidents, ethnic minorities and religious figures.

    Washington has been sanctioning China accusing it of persecuting Uyghur and other Muslim minorities as well as human rights violations in Tibet and Xinjiang and undermining Hong Kong's political freedoms. Beijing refutes these accusations, describing them as outside meddling.

    Tags:
    visa, US, China
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