Sat, Oct 06, 2018 - Page 7 News List

Beijing rejects US allegation of poll meddling

AFP and AP, BEIJING and WASHINGTON

China yesterday rejected US Vice President Mike Pence’s charge that Beijing was meddling in US elections as “unwarranted” and “ridiculous.”

In a blistering speech, Pence on Thursday accused China of military aggression, commercial theft and rising human rights violations, as he cast the Asian power as a villain bent on interfering in upcoming US polls.

“The relevant speech made unwarranted accusations against China’s domestic and foreign policies and slandered China by claiming that China meddles in US internal affairs and election,” Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Hua Chunying (華春瑩) said in a statement.

“This is nothing but speaking on hearsay evidence, confusing right and wrong and creating something out of thin air. The Chinese side is firmly opposed to it,” she said.

Pence charged that Russia’s influence operations in the US pale in comparison with the covert and overt activities China is taking to interfere in the US midterm elections and counter Trump’s tough trade policies against Beijing.

He laid out measures Beijing is employing to undermine the Trump administration.

They include public steps such as targeting Chinese tariffs to industries in states that are crucial to Trump in the midterms as well as behind-the-scenes actions like coercing US businesses to speak out against the Trump administration and intimidating academics.

Pence also denounced China’s maneuvers in the South China Sea, its oppression of Christians, Muslims and other religious believers, and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s (習近平) signature infrastructure and foreign policy initiative.

The unusually expansive and aggressive criticism of Beijing by a senior US official indicated that Washington could be preparing to take a more confrontational approach with China on issues beyond just the trade dispute.

Pence said Beijing’s actions add up to a simple message: “China wants a different American president.”

Relations between the world’s two largest economies have plummeted in recent weeks, with Trump placing US$250 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods, in part over charges that Beijing forces US companies to hand over technological know-how.

“It is very ridiculous for the US side to stigmatize its normal exchanges and cooperation with China as China interfering in its internal affairs and elections,” Hua said.

“China always follows the principle of non-interference in others’ internal affairs and we have no interest in meddling in US internal affairs and elections,” she said.

“We urge the US to correct its wrongdoing, stop groundlessly accusing and slandering China and harming China’s interests and China-US ties,” she said.

This story has been viewed 1168 times.

Comments will be moderated. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned.

TOP top