special relationship with Hong Kong, including on trade and law enforcement, and that he was withdrawing from the World Health Organization, as part of a broad effort to retaliate against China.
broad new national security powers over Hong Kong. On Wednesday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that he was reporting to Congress a determination that Hong Kong no longer had significant autonomy under Chinese rule. Mr. Pompeo’s finding amounted to a recommendation that the United States should reconsider its special relationship with Hong Kong.Relations between the United States and China are at their worst point in decades. Now, after two years of fights over trade and technology, Hong Kong and the coronavirus pandemic have emerged as new sources of conflict, accelerating the downward spiral of the relationship between the world’s two largest economies.reported this week that American officials had decided to cancel visas for graduates of Chinese universities with military ties, which would affect thousands of Chinese students, less than 1 percent of the total number from China studying in the United States.a failure to meet accounting standards by Chinese companies that are listed on American stock exchanges. Chinese law limits the access of auditors to financial information in China, and lawmakers of both parties have complained this puts American investors at risk.
And Mr. Trump also said he was “terminating” the United States’ “relationship” with the W.H.O., which he portrayed as a puppet of the Chinese Communist Party. The president, who previously halted funding to the organization, repeatedly blamed the organization and China for mishandling the coronavirus outbreak after the pandemic spread to the United States.
Allies of the W.H.O., which gets most of its funding from America, defended the organization and its response to the pandemic, saying it was among the earliest public health voices warning of the danger from the virus.
Mr. Trump was joined at the news conference by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin; the United States trade representative, Robert E. Lighthizer; the national security adviser, Robert C. O’Brien; and the director of the White House’s National Economic Council, Larry Kudlow.
Mr. Pompeo had earlier called the new Chinese national security law on Hong Kong a “death knell” for the territory, a global financial and commercial hub that, in theory, has semiautonomy until 2047 under an international treaty that Britain and China signed in 1984. Because of that, an American law passed in 1992 established the special relationship.
signing of a Phase 1 trade deal, an agreement that included a commitment by China to buy more American agricultural and other goods. But the pandemichas led China to fall far behind schedule in the $200 billion of additional purchases it promised to make before the end of 2021.tracking by Chad Bown, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.
Mr. Trump and his advisers have grown increasingly dissatisfied with that arrangement. But they face a difficult choice: stick with the deal and risk looking feckless in an election year, or walk away from a pact they counted as Mr. Trump’s signature achievement with China and risk inflicting more pain on farmers who were expected to benefit from it.
For the moment, they are hoping that tougher statements will goad the Chinese into action.
Stephen Vaughn, a former trade official who is now a partner at King & Spalding, insisted that China had more to lose.
“If China complies with the deal, the president gets the benefit of the deal,” he said. “If China does not comply with the deal, China will face enforcement, and history shows enforcement hurts China more than it hurts the United States.”
Alan Rappeport contributed reporting.