As US shuts down Chinese Consulate in Houston, China orders closure of US Consulate in Chengdu

Diplomatic relations between the United States and China nosedived further as China  ordered closure of US Consulate in the southwestern city of Chengdu. The move comes just three days after the US closed down the Chinese Consulate in Houston after visuals surfaced of papers and documents being burnt inside the Consulate compound.

A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said US diplomats in China had been notified Friday morning that Beijing was revoking the license for the Chengdu consulate in China’s southwest, which has been ordered to “stop all business and activities.”
The statement further added that the US had “unilaterally provoked the incident” by ordering closure of the Houston Consulate, which according to Beijing “seriously violated international law and the basic norms of international relations.”
“The current situation between China and the United States is something China does not want to see, and the responsibility rests entirely with the United States,” the foreign ministry said. “We once again urge the US to immediately revoke the erroneous decision to create necessary conditions for the return of bilateral relations to normal.”

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A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said US diplomats in China had been notified Friday morning that Beijing was revoking the license for the Chengdu consulate in China’s southwest, which has been ordered to “stop all business and activities.”

It added that the US had “unilaterally provoked the incident” by ordering the closure of the Houston office, an action Beijing said “seriously violated international law and the basic norms of international relations.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying defended China’s “legitimate and necessary” response.

Justifying President Xi’s move to order closure of the US Consulate in Chengdu, Chinese state run Global Times also hit out at President Trump’s decision to shut down the Houston Consulate.

Incidentally, US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that his administration does not rule out closing additional Chinese diplomatic missions in the United States.

“As far as closing additional embassies, it’s always possible. We thought there was a fire in the one we did close, I guess they were burning documents and papers. I wonder what that is all about,” Trump said during a daily press briefing at the White House when asked if he planned to close more Chinese diplomatic missions in the country.

The US State Department ordered China to close its Consulate in Houston by Friday over accusations that it engaged for years in massive illegal spying and influence operations in the US.

ALSO READ: US asks China to close its Consulate in Houston in 72 hours

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