U.S. set to announce new sanctions on six individuals linked to Hong Kong mass arrests - sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States is set to announce fresh sanctions on Friday on six individuals connected to the mass arrests earlier this month of Hong Kong pro-democracy activists, two sources familiar with the matter said.

Hong Kong police on Jan. 5 arrested 53 people in dawn raids on democracy activists in the biggest crackdown since China last year imposed a security law which opponents say is aimed at quashing dissent in the former British colony.

U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo last week warned of fresh sanctions in response to the arrests of pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong. The warning came a day after supporters of President Donald Trump on Jan. 6 stormed Congress in a bid to overturn his November election defeat, prompting China's state media to accuse U.S. politicians of "double standards."

Pompeo also said last week that the United States would also "explore restrictions against the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in the United States, and take additional immediate actions against officials who have undermined Hong Kong's democratic processes."

Any action Friday would come just five days before Trump is due to leave office and be succeeded by Joe Biden.

State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk; Additional reporting by David Brunnstrom)

01/15/2021 14:41

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