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U.S. Shutters Chinese Consulate in Houston

A FedEx employee removes a box from the Chinese Consulate Thursday, July 23, 2020, in Houston.

The Houston consulate’s activities went well over the line of what the United States is willing to accept from the foreign diplomatic corps.

U.S. Shutters Chinese Consulate in Houston
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For years the U.S. has made a simple request to the People’s Republic of China to stop its criminal, coercive, and nefarious activities in the United States. And for years the Chinese government has refused to do so. In light of its intransigence, the U.S. State Department has shuttered the Chinese consulate in Houston, Texas, over alleged efforts to illegally transfer medical research from institutions in the area; to persuade more than 50 researchers, professors and academics in the area to turn over information to Chinese institutions; and to pressure Chinese citizens in the United States whom the Chinese government considers political rivals to return to their homeland.

The Houston consulate’s activities went well over the line of what the United States is willing to accept from the foreign diplomatic corps. The Administration’s decision to order the closure of the PRC consulate in Houston was just the latest in a series of actions the United States has taken to rein in the aggressive behavior of the CCP.

For years Beijing has enjoyed free and open access to U.S. society while not offering reciprocal access to U.S. diplomats in China. This is unacceptable. But it isn’t only in the United States where the Chinese missions abuse their welcome. Indeed, the theft of intellectual property and spying is a global threat. A recent 11-count indictment handed down by the U.S. Justice Department alleges that Li Xiaoyu and Dong Jiazhi conducted a hacking campaign lasting more than ten years to the present, targeting companies in countries with high technology industries, including the United States, Australia, Belgium, Germany, Japan, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Spain, South Korea, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

Each new indictment exposes how the PRC has relied on illegal, covert, coercive, corrupt behavior to try to impose its will on the world to gain unfair advantage in its economic and diplomatic relationships.

The recent actions taken by the State Department vis-à-vis the PRC are an effort to place the U.S.-China relationship on the solid foundation of fairness, respect and reciprocity.

President Trump has said, “Enough,” to the CCP’s unacceptable behavior in the United States. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made this point during his recent European travels: “We are setting out clear expectations for how the Chinese Communist Party is going to behave, and when they don’t, we’re going to take actions that protect the American people, protect our security, our national security, and also protect our economy and jobs.”