The United States has urged China to close its embassy in Houston immediately after accusing it of indirect use of the agency as a place for spying, a charge that has further strained relations between the world’s two largest economies.
The Houston Department of Homeland Security has ordered the closure of its embassy in China in a statement issued by State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus on Wednesday. use the Office in a different way than the embassy it opened for.
In a separate statement, the ministry alleged that China had been spying on the United States for years through its bureaucracy.
Wednesday’s move, which angered China, has deepened tensions between the two largest economies, a trade dispute that has led to tax cuts, a Hong Kong dispute and a coronavirus issue.
The Houston Department of Homeland Security says closing the Office is an attempt to provide full protection to the lives and property and well-being of Americans.
However, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Wang Wenbin said there was no doubt that the ministry would suspend its activities, but that the United States needed to reconsider its decision, which would affect diplomatic relations between the two countries.