China has recorded more than 100 instances of the United States “interference” in the internal affairs of Hong Kong, urging Washington to stop meddling in the semi-autonomous Chinese city.
"The United States must not tolerate any force that is anti-China and stirs troubles in Hong Kong, or else it will only be lifting a stone to hit one's foot," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said at a daily news briefing in the capital Beijing on Friday,
The remarks came after China’s Foreign Ministry published a list on its website that detailed instances of US interference since 2019, including former President Donald Trump’s signing of the Hong Kong Autonomy Act in 2020 as well as President Joe Biden’s recent show of support for the Apple Daily tabloid in the self-ruled island.
Other US officials included in the list are US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his successor Anthony Blinken.
The ministry did not elaborate why the list was released or whether it would take punitive action against those named on the list.
Last year, Trump signed an executive order to end the preferential economic treatment of Hong Kong in response to a national security law by Beijing that criminalized sedition and secession.
The move marked a new low in relations between the two sides, which have worsened in recent years over a range of issues, including trade, the South China Sea, arms sales to Taiwan and the coronavirus pandemic
Back in June, Biden called the closure of Hong Kong’s Apple Daily tabloid a "sad day for media freedom" and said it signaled "intensifying repression" by China.
Beijing criticized the US president’s remarks, with Chinese authorities saying that dozens of the newspaper articles violated Hong Kong’s new national security law.
Apple Daily was founded by media tycoon Jimmy Lai, a UK citizen, who was arrested over suspected collusion with foreign forces and is now in jail awaiting trial.
US officials have on numerous occasions condemned China’s “tight control” over Hong Kong, particularly after the implementation of the national security law.
The Chinese-proposed national security law for Hong Kong was enacted in July last year.
The law triggered anti-government protests in Hong Kong, with the critics calling the measure a blow to the semi-autonomous region’s powers and civil liberties.
Beijing has, however, assured that the law targets a minority of troublemakers that disregard law and order in the Chinese financial hub.
The US, Britain, and other Western countries have openly slammed the Chinese law and voiced support for anti-government protesters in Hong Kong.
China has repeatedly criticized the United States and its allies for their “interference” in the domestic affairs of Hong Kong.
Hong Kong was also rocked by violent protests over another bill that would have reformed its extradition law in 2019. Rioters vandalized the city, destroying public and private property and attacking anyone deemed to be pro-government. Hong Kong dropped that bill, but the acts of violence continued.
The Chinese government said at the time that the United States and Britain fanned the flames of the unrest in Hong Kong by supporting the protesters.
Hong Kong has been governed under the “one-country, two-system” model since the city — a former British colony — was returned to China in 1997.