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China will fight back against any sanctions: China Daily editorial

By Zhang Zhouxiang | | Updated: 2021-07-24 15:01
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Chinese and US flags flutter outside the building of an American company in Beijing, Jan 21, 2021. [Photo/Agencies]

By announcing sanctions against six US individuals and an entity on Friday evening, in a tit-for-tat response to the United States imposing sanctions on seven deputy directors of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China demonstrated it will not just meekly turn the other cheek and accept whatever slap the US thinks it can deliver.

China's sanctions are the first since the Anti-Foreign Sanctions Law came into effect on June 10. They prove that the new law will not be a toothless tiger. Every clause of the law will be implemented exactly as its text states.

Three hours after the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced the sanctions, the White House said it was"undeterred" by the move. But that has missed the point. By imposing the sanctions, China is not trying to deter the US from its practice, despite its erroneous nature. Instead, as the Foreign Ministry made clear in its announcement, the sanctions are a reciprocal response to the US sanctioning of seven Chinese officials.

Instead of declaring that it will not be"deterred" from carrying on with its attempts at bullying, the US should realize the days are now gone when it could wield its sanctions-spiked club with impunity.

Every move it makes to browbeat China with sanctions will be repaid in kind.

In this instance, China's counter sanctions have been imposed on six individuals who played a role in proposing, approving or implementing the US sanctions against seven Hong Kong liaison office officials, who were added to the US Treasury's" specially designated nationals" list. China's targeted countermeasures mean that the individuals will not be able to enter China. Since some of the sanctioned individuals, such as Sophie Richardson, China director of Human Rights Watch, like to describe themselves as "experts on China", the sanctions will make them lose any connections they may have with China, thus making their fabrications and lies lose any credibility they may have wrongly enjoyed because of that claim.

The countermeasures also mean that any entities or companies launched or run by the sanctioned individuals will not be able to do businesses with China, which will shut many doors to them. Even though the US has made many anti-globalization moves, globalization remains an irreversible trend and it is difficult to find a big US company or organization that has no links with China.

And according to the China-America Chamber of Commerce, the Chinese market remains a long-term part of US companies' plans despite the worsening relationship. Which of them will want to hire a sanctioned individual at the cost of their China business?

The sanctioning of the six individuals and the so-called Hong Kong Democracy Council, which supported the lobbying of US politicians on the US Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, should be a warning that China will not take the US attempts to intimidate it lying down: Any attempts to try and strong-arm China with sanctions will end up simply proving the proposition that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Follow the author on Twitter: @zzxang86


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