US cancels 1,000 China student visas, claiming ties to military

US cancels 1,000 China student visas, claiming ties to military

  • State department has been revoking visas since 1 June after Trump order to tackle intellectual property theft

The US has revoked the visas of more than 1,00 Chinese students and researchers it said had ties to the Chinese military, accusing some of espionage, in the latest dispute between the rival superpowers.

China had been “abusing student visas to exploit American academia”, said Chad Wolf, acting secretary for the Department of Homeland Security, in a speech on Wednesday. “We are blocking visas for certain Chinese graduate students and researchers with ties to China’s military fusion strategy to prevent them from stealing and otherwise appropriating sensitive research.”

It follows a proclamation in late May from President Donald Trump that “certain graduate level and above Chinese nationals associated with entities in China” that support or work with the Chinese military, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) would be blocked from entering the US. He said Chinese nationals studying in the US had stolen intellectual property and assisted the PLA.

Last month the US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, flagged moves on student visas, telling a local radio show: “Not every Chinese student who is here is working on behalf of or at the behest of, the direction of the Chinese Communist party, but it’s something President Trump has taken a serious, serious look at.”