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Wednesday, March 29, 2023

China’s parliament has accused US lawmakers of trampling on the sovereignty of other nations

BEIJING: China’s ceremonial parliament has accused US lawmakers of trampling on the sovereignty of other nations after the US passed a measure condemning an alleged Chinese spy balloon intrusion into US airspace.

A statement issued Thursday by the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National People’s Congress reiterated Beijing’s insistence that the balloon was an unmanned civilian weather research airship, which the US rejected, citing its flight path and the payload capacity of the tracking equipment.

While China initially expressed regret over the February 4 incident, it has toughened its rhetoric in another sign of how badly relations between the two sides have deteriorated in recent years.

On Wednesday, the State Department said it would take action against US entities somehow related to the downing of the balloon, without giving details.
The resolution, previously unanimously approved by the US House of Representatives, “deliberately exaggerated the Chinese threat”, the Foreign Relations Committee said.


This was “purely malicious hype and political manipulation,” it said. “Some politicians in the US Congress have fanned the flames and fully exposed their sinister plans to confront and suppress China.”
“In reality, it is the United States that arbitrarily interferes in the internal affairs of other countries, violates their sovereignty, and conducts surveillance of other countries,” it said.

A number of Chinese government officials have protested the US’s handling of the problem daily, accusing Washington of overreacting and violating the “spirit of international law.” Beijing has not provided any details on which company or government agency was responsible for the giant balloon. the remains of which are being sent to an FBI lab for analysis.

Along with the passage of the resolution by Congress, the US imposed sanctions on six Chinese entities it says are linked to Beijing’s aerospace programs. Foreign Secretary Antony Blinken also canceled a visit to Beijing, abruptly freezing what some saw as a push to stabilize relations that have sunk to their lowest level in decades amid disputes over trade, human rights, Taiwan and China’s claim to the South China Sea .

The House resolution condemned China for “brazen violations” of US sovereignty and efforts to “deceive the international community with false claims about its intelligence-gathering campaigns”.


U.S. officials have said China operates a fleet of such balloons, which are a relatively cheap and hard-to-detect method of intelligence gathering. The US government determined that the balloon posed little risk to national security and allowed it to fly across the continent before shooting it down with a missile off the coast of South Carolina.

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