WASHINGTON DC, KOMPAS.com – one the scientist origin China who are suspected of cheating visas and keep their relationship confidential military has escaped to consulate China of San Francisco, said US officials.
Prosecutors accused the case was part of a Chinese program secretly sending scientists from the military to AS.
On Wednesday (7/22/2020), the administration of US President Donald Trump has ordered the closure of the Chinese consulate at Houston and said they were involved in an intellectual property theft case.
China condemns the treatment of scientists and consulates in the US.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin accused the Trump government of using these excuses to limit, harass, or oppress Chinese scientists in the US.
Following the chaotic closure of the Chinese consulate in Houston, Trump threatened to close more Chinese consulate offices.
In recent months, he has often clashed with Beijing over trade, the corona virus pandemic, and the ratification of a controversial new national security law for Hong Kong.
What are the allegations about the Chinese consulate in San Francisco?
According to documents submitted by the prosecutor in a federal court in San Francisco, the suspect Juan Tang was a biological researcher at the University of California, Davis.
According to the document, in an interview with FBI agents last month, Tang said he had never worked for the Chinese military.
However, the document said, an open source investigation found that his photos were wearing army uniforms. A search of his home found other evidence indicating his affiliation with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army or PLA.
“Following Tang’s search and interview on June 20, 2020, Tang went to the Chinese consulate in San Francisco, where he subsequently settled, according to the FBI assessment,” wrote the court document, the first reported by a news website Axios.
The document said: “As the Tang case shows, the Chinese consulate in San Francisco provides potential safe houses for PLA soldiers to avoid prosecution in the United States.”
Prosecutors said this was not the only case, but was “part of a program implemented by the PLA” to send military scientists to the US behind the pretense.
The document also mentions other cases, in which two researchers were recently detained in California for lying about their alleged links with the Chinese military.
US-China tensions have worsened
Diplomatic relations between the United States and China deteriorated, after Washington ordered Beijing to close their consulate in Houston, no later than Friday (24/7/2020) – a move Beijing calls “political provocation”.
US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said the decision was taken because China “stole” intellectual property.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry condemned the move on Twitter, saying their embassy in Washington DC had received death threats.
Previously, through video footage, several unidentified individuals were seen burning paper in a wastebasket located on the land of the Chinese consulate in Houston.
Tensions between the US and China have been rising lately.
The administration of US President Donald Trump has repeatedly clashed with Beijing over the issue of the corona virus trade and pandemic, as well as the implementation of the National Security Act in Hong Kong.
Then, on Tuesday (7/21/2020), the US Ministry of Justice accused China of sponsoring hackers who were targeting a number of laboratories that were developing the Covid-19 vaccine. Two Chinese citizens, accused of spying on US research companies and assisted by Chinese government agents, have been charged.
Why did the US order the closure of the Chinese consulate?
Pompeo said the Chinese Communist Party stole “not only American intellectual property … but also European intellectual property … which caused hundreds of thousands of people to lose their jobs”.
“We outlined expectations of how the Chinese Communist Party would behave,” Pompeo said.
“If they do not meet [ekspektasi tersebut]”We will take action to protect the American people, protect our security, our national security, and also protect our economy and our work,” he added.
Throughout the US, there are five Chinese consulates and one embassy in Washington DC. It was not clear why the Chinese consulate in Houston was asked to close.
In a separate statement, the US Foreign Ministry accused China of carrying out “illegal spy activities and influence operations” that interfered with “domestic politics” and “forced our business leaders, to threaten Chinese American families living in China, and others”.
How is China responding?
In a series of chanting, a spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Hua Chunying, explained that the reasons given by the US regarding the closure of the consulate in Houston were “extremely fabricated”.
He urged the United States to change the “wrong decision”, or that China would “act with a firm response”.
“When Chinese diplomats brought understanding between the two sides and friendship, the US embassy in China attacked the Chinese political system in public,” he said.
“As a result of the defamation and hatred blown by the US government, the Chinese embassy has received bomb threats and deaths.”
Chinese officials say the U.S. has more staff on its representatives in China than Chinese staff in the U.S.
The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has posted warnings to all its students in the US, asking them to “be on guard” as “US law enforcement agencies increase random interrogation, harassment, confiscation of personal belongings, and detention targeting Chinese students in the US”.
Chinese government media, Global Times, made a U.S. consulate poll which should be closed in retaliation for Washington’s actions.
What happened at the consulate?
Early signs of something unusual at the Chinese consulate in Houston surfaced on Tuesday (7/21/2020), when people across the consulate saw fires in a number of waste baskets.
Video footage shows several people throwing what looks like paper into a wastebasket. It is unknown who they are. The people were then seen pouring water into the wastebasket.
Emergency services were then called to the consulate building on Tuesday night. However, the Houston police said on Twitter that their members “were not given access to enter the building” but they saw smoke.
Chinese government spokesman Wang Wenbin did not directly respond to the fire on the consulate grounds. He only said the consulate in Houston was operating normally.