Focus: GS-II International Relations

Why in news?

The United States has told China to close its consulate in Houston, further deteriorating bilateral ties.


  • Washington “abruptly demanded” closure of the Houston consulate according to China.
  • Beijing condemned the order and threatened retaliation, but did not say what measures it might take.
  • The State Department confirmed the decision and said the move was made “to protect American intellectual property and American’s private information.”

National security cited

  • U.S. Secretary of State offered no specifics, but repeated accusations about Chinese theft of U.S. and European intellectual property.
  • The State Department said the consulate was ordered shut “in order to protect American intellectual property and Americans’ private information.”
  • It was not immediately clear why China’s Houston consulate had been singled out.
  • Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said the United States had interfered with China’s diplomatic missions.

-Source: The Hindu

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