US adds more Chinese companies to blacklist of restricted entities

The Department of Commerce The United States on Thursday imposed restrictions on the export of several Chinese companies for various national security reasons, including what Washington describes as their role in oppressing the Uighurs in China or collaborating with its military.

A senior government official said the Departments of Commerce and the Treasury will announce on Thursday a series of actions targeting Chinese companies that Washington says use biotechnology and surveillance to abuse human rights.

The Chinese embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Referring to his role in the Chinese government’s alleged oppression of ethnic Uighurs, the official said the Commerce Department will add the Chinese Academy of Military Medical Sciences and its 11 research institutes to its list, restricting access to exports.

The decision follows an investment ban on Chinese facial recognition company SenseTime, and could worsen already tense relations between Beijing and Washington.

“These actions are in the broader context of the administration’s efforts to address the misuse of technology to police and, in many cases, as with the PRC, to exercise repressive social control on a large scale,” said the high-ranking official to journalists, referring to the People’s Republic of China.

UN experts and human rights groups estimate that more than a million people, mostly Uighurs and members of other Muslim minorities, have been detained in recent years in a vast system of camps in the Xinjiang region, on the extreme western China.

Beijing denies the reported abuses in Xinjiang.

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