BEIJING: China has introduced sanctions on nine UK citizens and four entities in response to London’s sanctions on Beijing over the issue of human rights abuses in Xinjiang province, the Chinese foreign ministry said on Friday.
This comes after EU foreign ministers imposed sanctions on four Chinese officials and one entity on Monday over human rights abuses against Uyghurs. Later, the US, Canada and the UK also announced sanctions against China.
“The Chinese foreign ministry has summoned British ambassador to China to lodge solemn representations, expressing firm opposition and strong condemnation. The Chinese side decides to sanction, nine individuals and four entities on the UK side that maliciously spread lies and disinformation,” the Chinese foreign ministry said in a statement.
The ministry said that they will freeze the property of the sanctioned people and entities, as well as ban Chinese citizens and institutions from doing business with them.
The name of nine individuals and four entities are Tom Tugendhat, Iain Duncan Smith, Neil O’Brien, David Alton, Tim Loughton, Nusrat Ghani, Helena Kennedy, Geoffrey Nice, Joanne Nicola Smith Finley, China Research Group, Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, Uyghur Tribunal and Essex Court Chambers.
On Monday, the European Union had announced its sanctions, naming Zhu Hailun, former head of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR), and three other top officials, for overseeing the detention and indoctrination program targeting Uyghurs and other Muslim ethnic minorities in Xinjiang, according to the Official Journal of the European Union.
According to South China Morning Post, the sanctions are in response to alleged human rights abuses in the far western region of Xinjiang, where China is accused of detaining a million of Uyghur and other ethnic minorities in reeducation camps.