torsdag 27. august 2020

US sanctions 24 Chinese companies over South China Sea island building

The United States government has imposed sanctions on dozens of Chinese companies for helping Beijing advance its territorial claims in the South China Sea -- the first punitive action of its kind over the disputed waters, and one that is almost certain to escalate tensions between the countries.

In a statement Wednesday, the US Commerce Department said the 24 state-owned companies -- including several subsidiaries of the China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) -- played a "role in helping the Chinese military construct and militarize the internationally condemned artificial islands in the South China Sea" and "must be held responsible." The companies will be added to the Commerce Department's Entity List, which restricts American firms from selling US goods and technology to them without a special license, according to the statement.

Separately, the State Department announced Wednesday that it would impose visa restrictions on Chinese individuals "responsible for, or complicit in, either the large-scale reclamation, construction, or militarization of disputed outposts in the South China Sea, or the PRC's use of coercion against Southeast Asian claimants to inhibit their access to offshore resources."