China has agreed at a high-level meeting with the United States to work together on improving a relationship that has hit rock bottom, but despite the “constructive” talks, both sides stuck to their guns over key disputes, with the Chinese doubling down on a national security law for Hong Kong, reported South China Morning Post.
At their meeting in Hawaii, the first icebreaker since ties sank to a historic low over the Covid-19 pandemic and other political issues, state leader Yang Jiechi told US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that Beijing was determined to push ahead with the legislation in Hong Kong, regardless of Washington’s stiff opposition.
“Yang Jiechi pointed out that Hong Kong affairs, including the establishment of a legal system and enforcement mechanisms to uphold national security in Hong Kong, are purely China’s internal affairs. China is resolutely determined in advancing the national security legislation,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said.
“China urges the US side to respect China’s sovereignty, view the legislation objectively and fairly, and stop meddling in Hong Kong’s internal affairs in any form,” Zhao said.