“Spy” balloon: Washington adds 37 Chinese entities to its blacklist

“Spy” balloon: Washington adds 37 Chinese entities to its blacklist
“Spy” balloon: Washington adds 37 Chinese entities to its blacklist

Washington adds 37 Chinese entities to its blacklist

Published today at 1:14 a.m.

The United States on Thursday added 37 Chinese entities to its commercial blacklist, including certain companies linked according to Washington to the overflight of American territory by a Chinese balloon accused of being a spy, and which had flown over American territory in early 2023.

The Commerce Department said it also targets those seeking to acquire U.S. products to advance China’s quantum technology capabilities.

“These activities have substantial military applications and constitute a significant threat to American national security,” he said in a statement. Companies added to the “entity list” cannot obtain U.S. items and technology without government authorization.

“Stay vigilant”

Some targeted entities are also linked to advances in China’s nuclear programs, or “involved in shipping controlled items to Russia” following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the Commerce Department added.

“We must remain vigilant in our efforts to prevent such entities from accessing U.S. technologies that could be used in ways that harm our national security,” said the Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security. security, Alan Estevez, quoted in the press release.

In February 2023, the Ministry of Commerce had already added six Chinese entities to the list of trade restrictions after the balloon incident. This imposing balloon crossed the United States from west to east, from Alaska to South Carolina, from the end of January to the beginning of February 2023.

Shot down over the Atlantic

It had passed over strategic military installations. The balloon was shot down on February 4 over the Atlantic and its debris was recovered by the American army, which has since studied its contents.

The incident had cast a chill in relations between Beijing and Washington. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken canceled a long-planned trip to China. Washington had assured that it was a spy balloon, which Beijing had denied, claiming that it had drifted unintentionally into American airspace.

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AFP

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