Beijing, March 23: In a retaliatory move, China has imposed sanctions against 10 individuals and four entities of the European Union (EU), saying they had severely harmed Beijing's "sovereignty and interests and maliciously spread lies and disinformation".
In a joint Trans-Atlantic operation, the US, Canada, the UK and the EU on Monday imposed sanctions against Chinese officials they say are responsible for the human rights abuses against the Uighur people in Xinjiang province.
Four Chinese officials and a Chinese company in the Xinjiang province were the targets of the sanctions.
The officials' and the company's assets are frozen under the sanctions and EU citizens and companies are banned from transacting with them. The officials are also banned from visiting the bloc.
In a statement on Monday night, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said the Trans-Atlantic sanctions were "based on nothing but lies and disinformation, disregards and distorted facts, grossly interferes in China's internal affairs, flagrantly breaches international law and basic norms governing international relations, and severely undermines China-EU relations", Xinhua news agency reported.
According to the spokesperson, the individuals and entities to be sanctioned are Reinhard Butikofer, Michael Gahler, Raphael Glucksmann, Ilhan Kyuchyuk and Miriam Lexmann of the European Parliament; Sjoerd Wiemer Sjoerdsma of the Dutch Parliament; Samuel Cogolati of the Belgian Federal Parliament; Dovile Sakaliene of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania; German scholar Adrian Zenz; Swedish scholar Bjorn Jerden; Political and Security Committee of the Council of the European Union, Subcommittee on Human Rights of the European Parliament; the Mercator Institute for China Studies in Germany; and the Alliance of Democracies Foundation in Denmark.
The sanctioned individuals and their families are prohibited from entering the mainland, Hong Kong and Macao, said the spokesperson, adding that they and companies and institutions associated with them are also restricted from doing business with Beijing. - IANS