Ambassador of China: China opposes the escalation of relations with the United States after the closure of the consulates

Tsui Tiankai said the accusations against the Chinese consulate are “absolutely groundless.”

China opposes the escalation of relations with the United States after the closure of the Chinese Consulate General in Houston, Texas, and the American Consulate General in Chengdu. China’s ambassador to the United States, Tsui Tiankai, made a corresponding statement at the annual security forum organized by the Aspen Institute on Tuesday.

“I think that the accusations against our consulate or any of our diplomatic missions are absolutely groundless,” he said in response to the host’s question regarding the US authorities’ allegations that his employees were allegedly found to have stolen American technology. “We didn’t start all this,” said the Chinese ambassador. – We definitely would like to preserve the work of both Consulates.

“[The [Chinese] Consulate General in Houston] has worked hard to facilitate exchanges between countries, people-to-people contacts, cultural, sporting, educational exchanges – many things that benefit both countries. The American decision to close the Houston Consulate is therefore regrettable. But diplomacy always keeps the principle of reciprocity, so we had to respond”, –  Tsui Tiankai said.

“But we didn’t want that to happen from the very beginning”, –  concluded the diplomat. – “And we definitely do not want it to escalate.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said on July 27 that the Chinese authorities consider the American side’s accusation of spying on employees of the Consulate General of China in Houston to be slanderous and suggest that Washington “correct the mistake it made” in order to normalize bilateral relations.

On July 21, Washington demanded that Beijing close the Consulate General in Houston within 72 hours due to “theft of American technology,” “inappropriate use” of student exchange systems, and “behavior incompatible with standard practice of diplomacy” of employees. The Chinese Foreign Ministry promised to retaliate on the same day, and on July 24 announced a “mirror countermeasure” – the closure of the U.S. diplomatic mission in Chengdu.

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