Bolton said Trump doesn’t have a coordinated policy on China

The former assistant to the president on national security also has admitted that the soft position of the American leader on the problem of human rights in the republic has untied the Chinese authorities’ hands against Hong Kong.

The U.S. Presidential Administration, Donald Trump, has no consistent and coordinated policy toward China. This opinion was expressed by former U.S. presidential aide for national security John Bolton in an interview with Japan’s leading business newspaper Nikkei on Thursday.

“We haven’t had a coordinated, consistent policy towards China – mainly because [Donald] Trump looked at almost everything about China through an economic prism, with an emphasis on trade”, –  he said. Bolton also stressed that the trade policy itself was not coordinated, which made it difficult to fully take into account such non-economic factors as China’s actions in the South China Sea, East China Sea and building up China’s military power.

At the same time, the former U.S. presidential aide for national security admitted that Trump’s soft position on the human rights issue in China had actually unleashed the hands of the Chinese authorities in the plan of action against Hong Kong. “I think that Xi Jinping, after several conversations [with the U.S. president] over the course of several years, came to the conclusion that he has complete freedom of action,” he said. Bolton also expressed confidence that the U.S. administration’s current actions toward China are more related to the Coronavirus than to human rights issues or the situation in Hong Kong.

“Now [Trump] has taken a tough stance against China because it’s politically advantageous for it. But we don`t know if that position will remain so if he`s re-elected”, – Bolton added, who also expressed concern that once re-elected for a second term, Donald Trump might try again to make a “big trade deal” with China.

On 30 June, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (the supreme legislative body of the People’s Republic of China) passed a law on ensuring national security in Hong Kong. This legal act aims to prevent acts such as separatism, terrorism, undermining State authority and collusion with foreign forces. Special bodies have been established in the Special Administrative Region, which are not under the jurisdiction of the Hong Kong administration. Such an innovation had elicited criticism from certain Western countries, which felt that it infringed on Hong Kong’s autonomy.

On July 14, U.S. President Donald Trump reported that he signed a bill on sanctions against China in connection with the situation in Hong Kong, as well as an executive decree to cancel U.S. trade and economic preferences for this special administrative region of China.


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