US trade ban: The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced a ban on imports of China’s tomato and cotton products in the Xinjiang region over forced labor on Wednesday.
On Thursday, China dismissed the decision and demanded Washington to drop the decision of banning cotton and tomato imports over forced labor allegations.
The ban adds to the numerous sanctions that were imposed by the Trump administration on Chinese products, companies, and officials over national security concerns and human rights complaints.
The US and China tensions soar higher during the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic as the blame game began over the origin of the virus.
A Chinese Foreign Ministry representative claimed without proof that the U.S. military brought the infection to China, while President Trump over and over called it a “Chinese virus.”
The latest ban on the trade of cotton and tomato from China’s Xinjiang region was declared by its Customs and Border Protection on Wednesday following the UK and Canada presented similar actions.
The Human Rights Watch (HRW) additionally criticized China for repressing Uygurs people in a human rights report and stated that the human rights situation in China is exacerbating.
The ban applies to raw fiber, textile, and apparel produced using Xinjiang’s cotton. It additionally applies to items made in other countries, Reuters revealed.
On Thursday, the Chinese authorities, including the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) and the Foreign Ministry (FM), asserted solid resistance to the prohibition, calling it an interference in the domestic affairs of China.
The forced labor accusation is a big lie, and it will damage the global business chain, the Chinese authorities added.
The Chinese FM representative Zhao Lijian express that the forced labor allegation is the century’s biggest lie that the US and some Western nations made.
“The US is attempting to bolster its own farming advancement by setting such trade bans, including constraining China,” Zhu added, taking note that China could likewise consider countermeasures against the US government since forced labor issues exist in America too.
In a press conference on Thursday, Zhao reported that forced labor existed in the US as well, pointing towards Texas prisoners who were reportedly forced to work without pay for 12 hours to create masks during the COVID-19 outbreak, The Global Times reported.