President Trump Officially Designates Hong Kong as No Longer Separate from China in Executive Order
In an executive order signed yesterday, President Trump officially declared that Hong Kong “is no longer sufficiently autonomous to justify differential treatment in relation to the People’s Republic of China”.
This designation has been expected, and is in retaliation to China’s recently passed national security legislation on Hong Kong.
Hong Kong will now be treated by the United States in the same manner as China in terms of trade, immigration, and military & defense services. Additionally, the executive order threatens sanctions and the seizure of assets on any individual found guilty of “censorship or other activities with respect to Hong Kong that prohibit, limit, or penalize the exercise of freedom of expression or assembly by citizens of Hong Kong, or that limit access to free and independent print, online or broadcast media”; “extrajudicial rendition, arbitrary detention, or torture of any person in Hong Kong or other gross violations of internationally recognized human rights or serious human rights abuse in Hong Kong”; or “the coercing, arresting, detaining, or imprisoning of individuals under the authority of… the Law of the People’s Republic of China on Safeguarding National Security in the Hong Kong Administrative Region”.
China has previously responded that the “threat of sanctions by the US cannot scare the Chinese people”. Today, China’s Minister of Foreign Affairs reiterated that “China will definitely respond” to any sanctions, and “will make the necessary response and impose sanctions on relevant US personnel and entities”. China’s Foreign Minister added how the “United States’ attempt to obstruct the implementation of Hong Kong’s national security law will never succeed”.