China Issues Ban, Asset Freeze Against Research Company That Reported Human Rights Violations

China Issues Ban, Asset Freeze Against Research Company That Reported Human Rights Violations

( – It’s no secret that China is not a place that respects human rights. The communist government has been accused of horrific abuses against its people for decades. In the last few years, the country has also faced allegations that it is carrying out a genocide against the Uyghur minorities in the Xinjiang region. The Chinese Communist Party has allegedly destroyed their religious monuments, forced them into labor camps, and sterilized them against their will — among other things.

The Chinese government has now placed sanctions on a US research company and other individuals who have extensively reported on the abuses in the Asian country.

China Issues Sanctions

On December 26, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning announced sanctions against the Los Angeles-based firm Kharon. The data and research firm was founded by ex-Treasury Department officials who collect information on the alleged forced labor happening in the Xinjiang region where the Uyghurs live. The firm provides the data to companies and helps them comply with US laws.

Mao also announced sanctions on Edmund Xu, Kharon’s director of investigations, and Nicole Morgret, a human rights analyst who is affiliated with the Center for Advanced Defense Studies. Both Xu and Morgret are prohibited from traveling to China. Also, the government is seizing any property or assets that they have in China.

The Foreign Ministry spokesperson said the sanctions were retaliation for an annual US government report about the human rights abuses in the country. He claimed Xu was providing “so-called evidence for America’s illegal sanctions related to Xinjiang.”

Kharon Responds

In a statement on its website, Kharon’s staff confirmed the Chinese government had levied sanctions against the firm and froze its assets. The firm stated that it had “no presence in China” to begin with, so the frozen assets mean nothing.

The firm noted that China has issued sanctions against many other US “businesses, individuals, and organizations over the last several years.” However, it has continued its mission to collect information to help companies comply with the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA). The US law prohibits goods from entering the US if they originated in Xinjiang unless they can prove that they didn’t come from forced labor from the region. The US government is among those that have accused China of genocide.

This is the second time the American firm has had sanctions issued by a foreign government. Iran sanctioned the company in April 2022, along with several US officials, and accused them of “terrorism.”

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