China Suspends US Navy Visits To Hong Kong

United States Congress recently passed legislation supporting human rights in Hong Kong.

China has said it will suspend US Navy visits to Hong Kong and sanction a range of pro-democracy, non-governmental organisations.

The move comes in retaliation for legislation in the United States Congress last week supporting human rights in Hong Kong.

Since June, protesters have clashed with police during demonstrations against plans to allow extradition to mainland China, part of a bill which was withdrawn in October.

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson repeated accusations that Congress's Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act "seriously interfered" in Hong Kong's internal affairs, appearing to consolidate China's threats that the US would pay a price for the legislation.

Along with suspending visits made by official US military ships and aircraft, China will sanction organisations including Human Rights Watch and others that the spokesperson said had "performed badly" during unrest in Hong Kong.

In recent weeks, China has told the United States to "stop flexing muscles in the South China Sea", in response to the US Navy regularly carrying out "freedom of navigation" operations close to Chinese-occupied islands in the contested waters.

Cover image: US Navy Ship USS Blue Ridge arriving in Hong Kong in April this year (Picture: US Department of Defense).