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US blocks import of Chinese products over ‘forced labour’

The US has banned the import of five goods from China, including computer-parts, cotton and hair products, alleging that they are produced in forced labor camps in the restive Muslim-majority Xinjiang province.

The US-China relations have deteriorated after the Covid-19 outbreak, with President Donald Trump squarely blaming Beijing for allowing the disease to spread across the world. The relations have further worsened over allegations of human rights abuses in Xinjiang province, the autonomy of Hong Kong, Tibet, and technology theft. In a statement on Monday, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said the products subject to the import ban are cotton, apparel, computer parts, and hair products.

The fifth ban is on all products made with labour from the Lop County Number 4 Vocational Skills Education and Training Centre in Xinjiang. These goods are produced with state-sponsored forced labour in Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, where the Chinese government is engaged in systemic human rights abuses against the Uyghur people and other ethnic and religious minorities, the DHS statement said.