The US is placing sanctions on 11 Chinese officials and their allies in Hong Kong, including Chief Executive Carrie Lam, over their role in curtailing political freedoms in the former UK colony, the Treasury Department said Friday. “The United States stands with the people of Hong Kong and we will use our tools and authorities to target those undermining their autonomy,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement. Lam was sanctioned because she is “directly responsible for implementing Beijing’s policies of suppression of freedom and democratic processes,” the agency said.
The sanctioned individuals include Xia Baolong, director of the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of China’s State Council, and Chris Tang, commissioner of the Hong Kong Police Force. The 11 people will have any property and assets in the US frozen. But it’s not clear whether any of the sanctioned officials will be affected financially.
Lam, who works closely with Chinese authorities, has scoffed at the prospect of being targeted by US sanctions. “I do not have any assets in the United States nor do I long for moving to the United States,” Lam had told reporters on July 31.
The sanctions are being carried out under the “President’s Executive Order on Hong Kong Normalization,” which President Donald Trump signed last month to punish China for its moves against dissent in Hong Kong.Reuters