East Asia Watch

Why the Chinese restraint to Trump's blows

China has matched recent US broadsides with tempered tit-for-tat moves while planning for more trouble ahead, even after the Nov 3 US presidential election

Another week, another fresh round of China bashing from the Trump administration. This time, it came as an unprecedented move to shut a Chinese consulate in Houston, where shocked diplomats accused of committing serious espionage quickly got to work burning classified documents before they left the building after a 72-hour deadline.

True to the Chinese principle of reciprocity, Beijing returned the "favour" by closing the United States diplomatic mission in Chengdu, similarly giving the Americans three days to get out.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 28, 2020, with the headline 'Why the Chinese restraint to Trump's blows'. Print Edition | Subscribe