Commissioner's Office urges US side to examine itself, correct its mistakes and stop shifting the blame
2020/10/06

The spokesperson of the Commissioner's Office firmly opposed and condemned the false accusations the US Consulate General in Hong Kong made against China's legitimate and reasonable countermeasures applied to the US embassy and consulates in China, the Consulate General in Hong Kong included.

The spokesperson said that both the US and China shall accord full facilities for the performance of the functions of diplomatic and consular personnel of each other on their territory in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and the China-US Consular Convention. While China has duly facilitated normal activities of the US embassy, consulates and their personnel in China, the US side has nevertheless imposed rounds of restrictions on the normal performance of duties by the Chinese embassy, consulates and their personnel in the US since October 2019 regardless of China's firm opposition and representations, requiring senior Chinese diplomats in the US to receive Department of State approval to visit US university campuses and to meet with local government officials, and the Chinese embassy and consular posts to seek approval also for hosting cultural events with an audience larger than 50 people outside of mission properties. Such unreasonable practice has severely violated international law and norms governing international relations, disrupted the relations and normal people-to-people exchanges between the two countries, and run counter to the values of openness and freedom the US side claims to champion.

The spokesperson pointed out that the measures taken towards the US embassy and consulates in China are China's reciprocal, necessary and legitimate response to the groundless restrictions and barriers imposed by the US on the Chinese embassy, consulates and their personnel there. According to the Basic Law of the HKSAR, the Central People's Government shall be responsible for the foreign affairs relating to the HKSAR. Accordingly, the agreement regarding the maintenance of the US Consulate General in the HKSAR was signed between the Government of the PRC and the Government of the US, which confers no special treatment on the US Consulate General in Hong Kong. Therefore, the introduction and application of the relevant countermeasures to the US Consulate General in Hong Kong are completely just and legitimate, and have fully embodied instead of violating the "One Country, Two Systems" principle.

The spokesperson said that China's legitimate countermeasures against the erroneous US moves are aimed to urge the US to stop impeding bilateral exchanges and cooperation, and do not affect the lawful rights and freedoms enjoyed by the Hong Kong people at all. China will continue to support normal exchanges and cooperation between the communities of China and the US, and between Hong Kong and the rest of the world. At the same time, we are firmly against any attempt by external forces to undermine China's sovereignty and security and Hong Kong's prosperity and stability on the pretext of human rights and freedoms.

The spokesperson again urged the US side to examine itself, immediately correct its mistakes, stop the clumsy performance of distorting the truth and blaming the victim, stop discrediting "One Country, Two Systems" and meddling with Hong Kong affairs, and withdraw its unjustified restrictions on the activities of the Chinese embassy, consulates and their personnel in the US.

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