China state media blasts Houston consulate shutdown as Trump election gambit

Shanghai, July 23

The transfer by the United States authorities to close down China’s consulate in Houston is an try and blame Beijing for American failures forward of presidential elections in November, Chinese state media mentioned in editorials printed on Thursday.

The United States mentioned on Wednesday it had given China 72 hours to shut the consulate “to protect American intellectual property and Americans’ private information”.

The resolution marked a dramatic escalation of tensions between the world’s two greatest economies amid contemporary accusations of Chinese espionage within the United States and calls by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for a brand new world coalition in opposition to Beijing.

China’s embassy to the United States described the transfer to shut the Houston consulate as a “political provocation” and referred to as on Washington to “immediately revoke” the choice.

Foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying wrote on Twitter that China would “surely react with firm countermeasures”.

The official English-language newspaper China Daily described the transfer as “a new gambit in the US administration’s bid to paint China as a malevolent actor on the world stage, and thus make it an outlaw to the international community.” “The move shows that lagging behind his presidential election opponent in the polls… the US leader is going all out in his attempts to portray China as an agent of evil,” it added.

The Global Times, an English-language tabloid run by the Communist Party’s People’s Daily newspaper, additionally accused US President Donald Trump of taking part in politics.

“The November presidential election is driving Washington mad,” it mentioned.

In an announcement launched on Thursday morning, the Chinese embassy in Washington accused the United States of “groundless fabrications” in regards to the actions of China’s diplomatic missions and urged it to “immediately revoke this erroneous decision”.

“It’s time to step on the brakes and return to the right direction!” the embassy posted individually on its official Twitter account.

According to US court docket filings, the Federal Bureau of Investigation can also be alleging {that a} Chinese researcher accused of visa fraud and concealing ties to the army is now holed up in China’s consulate in San Francisco.

Other Chinese researchers at US universities have additionally been arrested for visa fraud, the filings confirmed. Reuters

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