DThat diplomatic dispute between Great Britain and China over mutual sanctions is coming to a head. Parliament in London banned the entry of Chinese ambassador Zheng Zheguang, the newspapers “Daily Telegraph” and the BBC reported on Tuesday. Zheng was due to attend a reception in the House of Commons this Wednesday.
The move follows Chinese sanctions against several British lawmakers after Great Britain – along with the European Union, the United States and Canada – initially imposed punitive measures against those responsible for the suppression of the Muslim Uighur minority in the Xinjiang region.
The Speaker of the House of Commons, Lindsay Hoyle, insisted that “if his country is imposing sanctions on some of our members, it is not appropriate to welcome the Chinese ambassador to Parliament”. The UK Foreign Office reported that Parliament was independent in its decisions.
Concerned MPs had previously written to Hoyle and the Speaker of the House of Lords, John McFaul, that the Chinese approach was an attack on Parliament as a whole. “It is therefore inconceivable that parliamentarians should face this infringement of our liberties, while the chief representative of the Chinese government in Great Britain is still free to come to Westminster and use the facilities here as a mouthpiece for his governance.” “
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