Hong Kong 'no longer autonomous' from China: Pompeo

Washington DC (USA)

Secretary of State Michael Pompeo has notified the US Congress that the Donald Trump administration no longer regards Hong Kong as autonomous from mainland China.

"Hong Kong does not continue to warrant treatment under United States laws in the same manner as US laws were applied to Hong Kong before July 1997," Pompeo said in a statement.

Pompeo's certification to Congress was not accompanied by the revocation of any specific privileges. It comes amid calls for the US to react against Beijing's move to impose Chinese national security law in Hong Kong to tighten its grip.

The US has condemned the Chinese Communist Party's proposal to "unilaterally and arbitrarily" impose national security legislation on Hong Kong, urging Beijing to reconsider its disastrous proposal, abide by its international obligations and respect Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy.
The legislation would allow Beijing to take aim at the large often violent anti-government protests that roiled Hong Kong for much of last year.

However, China has defended the proposal saying that such legislations are necessary to protect the country's sovereignty from external forces determined to undermine the Communist Party.
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