What Happened: The Chinese government is eyeing tighter visa rules for U.S. nationals with connections to anti-Chinese groups, Reuters reported Oct. 9. The report comes just after Washington said it would place visa restrictions on several Chinese government officials over alleged human rights abuses in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region.
Why It Matters: Although China's decision comes in response to new U.S. visa restrictions, they also reflect Beijing's growing concerns over Washington's support for Chinese dissidents and human rights groups. The initial scope of Beijing's visa regulation remains unclear. It's possible that China would gradually broaden the restrictions as part of a tit-for-tat escalation with the United States.
Background: The U.S. decision to impose visa restrictions on Chinese officials on Oct. 8 came just a day after the U.S. Commerce Department blacklisted 28 Chinese entities, including several technology companies.
- U.S., China: A Sign of Hope for Renewed Trade Talks (Sept. 12, 2019)
- Trump Looks to Open Another Front in the Trade War With China (Aug. 27, 2019)
- China, U.S.: What to Make of Washington's Watered-Down Tariffs (Aug. 13, 2019)