Measure Calls for Imposing Sanctions, Releasing Political Prisoners, Reconsideration of U.S. Agreements with China

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U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) on Thursday cosponsored a resolution condemning the People’s Republic of China and the Chinese Communist Party for the harsh and ongoing anti-democratic crackdown in Hong Kong.

Introduced by Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), S.Res.126 recommends U.S. government responses to the actions by China to suppressed free expression and democratic ideals in Hong Kong and other areas, including sanctions.

“The Chinese communist government’s abuse of basic political and human rights of the people of Hong Kong is a travesty on legal and moral grounds.  During this time of constant suppression and crisis, the United States must stand strong with the pro-democracy people of Hong Kong,” Hyde-Smith said.

The resolution, among other things, targets the government of the People’s Republic of China, the Chinese Communist Party, and the government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region for applying a “draconian national security law arbitrarily to conduct a crackdown of unprecedented scope and intensity, criminalizing peaceful protests, political dissent, and other forms of nonviolent expression by the people of Hong Kong.”

The bipartisan resolution calls on the government of the United States to respond by using all diplomatic and economic tools to punish Beijing, including targeted sanctions and measures contained in the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019 (PL.116-149).

The measure also encourages the U.S. government to use all diplomatic and legal means to reconsider new bilateral or multilateral agreements with China, to demand the release of political prisoners in Hong Kong, and to encourage the International Olympic Committee to relocate the 2022 Winter Olympics from China.

It also credits the people of Hong Kong, who “have repeatedly shown extraordinary dedication to the cause of democracy and freedom for more than 3 decades, and almost continuously since 2014…

Additional Senators cosponsoring the resolution include Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.).

A copy of the resolution is available here.

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Release from Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith.