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China accuses US of bullying other countries to side against it

Chinese official claims US bullying will not be successful

On Friday Zhao Lijian, spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry, said that US attempts to bully other countries over their ties with China would not succeed and reflected a “Cold War mentality”.

US implies Sri Lanka should break economic ties with China

Zhao was responding to comments made by Dean Thompson a US State Dept. official and top US diplomat to South Asia. Thompson said that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who would be traveling to South Asia next week to visit South Asia, the Maldives, India, and Indonesia would ask Sri Lanka to make a difficult choice over its economic relations with China although not mentioning China by name. Thompson said: “We encourage Sri Lanka to review the options we offer for transparent and sustainable economic development, in contrast to discriminatory and opaque practices..”

US officials have urged other countries to ban Chinese company Huawei

US officials have tried to persuade its allies in Europe to ban Chinese global technology firm Huawei. The US pressure worked in the UK which banned Huawei. Huawei specializes in 5g technologies.

US puts pressure on Italy to ban Huawei

In September, Pompeo had also visited Italy and warned the government against security risks to national security and privacy of its citizens by associating with Chinese technical companies with links to the Chinese government. Pompeo said in Italy at a joint news conference with the Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio: “The foreign minister and I had a long conversation about the United States’ concerns at the Chinese Communist Party trying to leverage its economic presence in Italy to serve its own strategic purposes. The United States also urges the Italian government to consider carefully the risks to its national security and the privacy of its citizens presented by technology companies with ties to the Chinese Community Party.”

So far, Italy has not banned Huawei although it is imposing stricter regulations on deals with Chinese technology companies. Italy raised the ire of the US when it joined in China’s Belt and Road initiative.

US also critical of relations between China and the Vatican

The Vatican was able to agree with China over the appointment of Catholic bishops in China. Despite pressure from the US not to do so, the Vatican has renewed the agreement with China.

Portugal unhappy with US bullying

In September, US ambassador George Glass told Portugal that it had to choose between it friends and allies in the US and it economic partner China and described Portugal as a battlefield between the US and China. Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa responded to Glass: . “In Portugal it is the representatives chosen by the Portuguese and they alone who decide on their destiny, respecting the constitution and the rights it gives them.” Augusto Santos Silvo also responded to Glass pointing out that in Portugal decisions were made by Portuguese authorities who decided what was in Portugal’s interest.

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