Politics

China Sanctions Rubio, Cruz, Hawley And More Over Hong Kong

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Henry Rodgers Senior Congressional Correspondent
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A group of 11 Americans, including six members of Congress, were sanctioned by the Chinese government after the U.S. sanctioned Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam as well as 10 other Chinese officials over accusations of violating human rights and more.

The six members of Congress included Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Republican Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas, Republican Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley,  Republican Pennsylvania Sen, Pat Toomey, and Republican New Jersey Rep. Chris Smith, who were all sanctioned by Beijing for interfering with continuing to publicly criticize a new national security law that Beijing imposed on Hong Kong in late June, giving them control of the region, according to CNBC.

“The US action (Friday) was a blatant interference in Hong Kong’s affairs and in China’s internal affairs,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said Monday, per CNBC. “It was in serious violation of international law and basic norms governing international relations.”

Many of the lawmakers sent out comments about the sanctions on Twitter. “#China announces it is sanctioning me in retaliation for speaking out against #ChineseCommunistParty and defending America’s interests. Retaliate all you want. I’m not backing down,” Hawley said in a tweet.

Rubio also tweeted Monday morning saying, “Last month #China banned me. Today they sanctioned me. I don’t want to be paranoid but I am starting to think they don’t like me.” (RELATED: Beijing Sanctions US Lawmakers Who Called Out China’s Abuses Against Uighur Population)

In July, Beijing sanctioned three U.S. lawmakers and an ambassador after the Trump administration called China out for alleged human rights abuses against its minority Uighur population. Among those lawmakers were Rubio, Cruz, and Smith.