Trump Signs Order Rescinding Hong Kong’s Special Status After Chinese Takeover

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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President Donald Trump signed an executive order rescinding Hong Kong’s special economic status Tuesday in response to China’s defacto takeover of the formerly democratic city.

Trump’s Tuesday order comes months after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo officially informed Congress that Hong Kong could no longer be considered autonomous from the Chinese Communist Party. China imposed strict national security restrictions on Hong Kong early this spring.

Trump said that Hong Kong would be “treated the same as mainland China,” according to CBS.

“Beijing’s disastrous decision is only the latest in a series of actions that fundamentally undermine Hong Kong’s autonomy and freedoms and China’s own promises to the Hong Kong people under the Sino-British Joint Declaration, a U.N.-filed international treaty,” Pompeo said in a statement in May. (RELATED: Hong Kong Is Proof America Needs To Wake Up To The US-China Cold War, China Expert Says)

Hong Kong has for decades been a stronghold of Western-style democracy within communist China, but Chinese Leader Xi Jinping’s regime has increasingly encroached on its autonomy.

Trump confirmed he has no plans to speak with Chinese Leader Xi Jinping regarding the order or any new trade deals. Trump said last week that continuing toward a phase 2 trade deal with China was essentially off the table.

“The relationship with China has been severely damaged. They could have stopped the plague, they could have stopped it, they didn’t stop it. They stopped it from going into the remaining portions of China from Wuhan province. They could have stopped the plague, they didn’t. The relationship with China has been severely damaged,” he said at the time.