China Criticizes US Bank Penalties 06/25 06:18
BEIJING (AP) -- China on Tuesday criticized Washington's efforts to enforce
U.S. law abroad following a news report three Chinese banks might be penalized
over dealings with North Korea.
The banks named by The Washington Post as facing possible loss of access to
the U.S. financial system denied they were under investigation.
The Post said a court found three Chinese banks in contempt for ignoring
demands for information about possible violations of sanctions imposed over
North Korea's nuclear program. The newspaper said the court didn't identify the
banks but their details fit the identities of Bank of Communications, China
Merchants Bank and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank.
"We consistently oppose the so-called long-armed jurisdiction of the United
States on Chinese companies," said a foreign ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang.
Geng gave no confirmation of the Post's report.
The order comes at a time of U.S.-Chinese tension over technology and trade
disputes. The two governments have raised tariffs on billions of dollars of
each other's imports. Washington has threatened to reduce Chinese tech giant
Huawei's access to U.S. components and technology.
The ruling by a federal judge in Washington means U.S. authorities can
terminate the banks' ability to process transactions in U.S. dollars, the Post
The Post said the judge rejected arguments based on Chinese privacy law due
to Beijing's "dismal compliance record" with such requests and Washington's
interest in countering North Korea's nuclear and missile programs.
Beijing, long the isolated North's only major ally, has supported U.N.
sanctions intended to force leader Kim Jong Un's government to give up nuclear
and missile development.
The Chinese banks said they comply with U.N. sanctions on North Korea.
"China Merchants Bank has consistently and strictly complied with Chinese
laws and relevant U.N. resolutions and other applicable sanctions and has not
been investigated for alleged violations," the bank said in a statement
reported by Chinese media.
A statement by Pudong Development Bank said it is legally barred from
releasing customer information without permission. China Merchants Bank said
requests should be made in line with a U.S.-Chinese judicial assistance