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U.S. suspends export of sensitive tech to Hong Kong as China passes new national security law

The United States government began measures today to end its special status with Hong Kong, one month after Secretary of State Michael Pompeo told Congress that Hong Kong should no longer be considered autonomous from China. The new actions include suspending export license exceptions for sensitive U.S. technology and ending the export of defense equipment to Hong Kong. Both the Commerce and State Departments also said further restrictions are being evaluated.
The U.S. government’s announcements were made a few hours before news broke that China had passed a new national security law that will give it greater control over Hong Kong. It is expected to take effect on July 1, according to the South China Morning Post.
The term “special status” refers to arrangements that recognized the difference between Hong Kong and mainland China under the “one country, two systems” policy put into place when the United Kingdom handed control of Hong Kong back to Beijing in 1997. These included different export controls, immigration policies and lower tariffs. But that preferential treatment was put into jeopardy after China proposed the new national security law, which many Hong Kong residents fear will end the region’s judicial independence from Beijing.
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