A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson warned it would retaliate if the U.S. did not reverse the decision.
“The U.S. abruptly demanded that China’s Consulate General in Houston cease all operations and events,” the spokesperson said. “China strongly condemns such an outrageous and unjustified move which will sabotage China-U.S. relations.”
Emergency services had earlier attended the Chinese consulate after responding to reports of a fire but were denied access, Houston Police Department said. Under the Vienna Convention, which covers diplomatic missions, countries can refuse access requests from the host country.
China currently has its embassy in Washington and — in addition to Houston — consulates in New York, L.A., San Francisco and Chicago. The U.S. has its embassy in Beijing and has consulates in the Chinese cities of Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Wuhan and Shenyang. It also has a consulate in the territory of Hong Kong.
BREAKING: The U.S. government abruptly ordered China to close its consulate in Houston in an “unprecedented escalation,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry says https://t.co/kCb6WFTK85 pic.twitter.com/2aZz8dDoB3
— Bloomberg (@business) July 22, 2020
Despite locking up 1 million Uighur Muslims in camps, disappearing whistleblowers and crushing Hong Kong, China's Communist regime will win a seat on the U.N.'s highest human rights body, here at the European Headquarters of the United Nations. Will any EU country speak out? 🇪🇺🚨 https://t.co/Hx2NUE6t0R
— Hillel Neuer (@HillelNeuer) July 21, 2020