China summons USA ambassador and recalls naval chief over sanctions move


United in their resentment of America's global influence, China and Russian Federation have sought in recent years to tighten up their ties and this month conducted week-long joint military drills in Moscow's largest ever war games.

The U.S. administration has imposed sanctions on China's military for purchasing weapons from Russian Federation.

The communist state bought Russian SU-35 fighter jets and S-400 surface-to-air missiles.

A US official, quoted in the report, said that the ultimate target of these sanctions was Russian Federation.

At a news conference on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang expressed anger and described Washington's move as unreasonable.

China's purchase of the weapons from Russian arms exporter Rosoboronexport violated a 2017 US law meant to punish the government of Russian President Vladimir Putin for interfering in USA elections and other activities.

Huang Xueping, deputy head of the CMC's office for global military cooperation, summoned the acting defense attache at the U.S. Embassy Saturday evening, according to a CMC press release.

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"The US approach is a blatant violation of the basic norms of global relations, a full manifestation of hegemony, and a serious breach of the relations between the two countries and their two militaries", the Chinese Ministry of National Defense's spokesperson Wu Qian said on its official Wechat account.

U.S. officials said that the USA could consider similar action against other countries taking delivery of Russian fighter jets and missiles. The U.S. says China is in breach of sanctions Washington imposed on Moscow over Russia's role in Ukraine and its alleged interference in U.S. politics.

The US Department of State said the sanctions were invoked under Section 231 of the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act of 2017 "for engaging in significant transactions with persons on the [List of Specified Persons]".

Russian Federation also protested the sanctions, warning that Washington was "playing with fire" and accusing the United States of trying to squeeze Russian Federation out of the global arms market. "The imposition of USA sanctions will have zero impact on Russian arms sales to China", said Ian Storey, of Singapore's ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute. In return, China has retaliated against USA exports.

The sanctions have been linked to China's import of 10 Su-35 fighter jets a year ago and S-400 surface-to-air missile system in 2018, the State Department said.

The two countries will launch new tariffs on Monday, with Washington targeting Dollars 200 billion in Chinese exports and Beijing hitting USD 60 billion worth of American products.