TRUMP FREEZES ASSETS OF CHINESE LEADERS OVER HK SECURITY LAW
US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order to impose sanctions over the situation in Hong Kong, which is now covered by a strict security law hatched in Beijing, the Russian news agency TASS reported on July 15, 2020.
The document, released by the White House on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) freezes "all property and interests in property that are in the United States" of foreign citizens, who, according to the US government, "have been involved, directly or indirectly, in the coercing, arresting, detaining, or imprisoning of individuals" under the Hong Kong national security bill or were involved "in developing, adopting, or implementing" the legislation.
The asset freeze is also envisaged for individuals involved in actions or policies "that undermine democratic processes or institutions in Hong Kong," "threaten the peace, security, stability, or autonomy of Hong Kong." It also targets those involved in media censorship, arbitrary arrests, torture and other human rights violations.
The executive order also envisages cancellation of US trade and economic preferences for Hong Kong as well as threatens the suspension of several intergovernmental agreements, including on extradition of criminals. On June 30, the Chinese lawmakers adopted a law on Safeguarding National Security in Hong Kong. This legislative act seeks to prevent such actions as separatism, terrorism, undermining of the central power and conspiracy with foreign anti-Chinese powers. Special agencies are formed in Hong Kong that are not subordinate to the Hong Kong administration. Such development sparked criticism from certain Western nations, who believe that it violates Hong Kong’s autonomy that was guaranteed for 50 years under the deal covering the 1997 handover.