China sanctions UK individuals for Xinjiang 'lies'


Broadcasters: NONE Digital: NONE*~

China has slapped sanctions on British individuals and organisations it accuses of spreading lies and disinformation about Xinjiang.

The Conservative party lawmaker Iain Duncan Smith was one of nine individuals targeted, as well as the Newcastle academic Jo Smith Finley.

They and their immediate families are now barred from entering China and Chinese citizens cannot do business with them.

The move is a retaliation to a set of sanctions imposed on Beijing this week by the United States, European Union, Britain and Canada.

Beijing stands accused of human rights violations against the Uighur Muslim minorities in Xinjiang.

Activists and U.N. rights experts say at least one million Muslims have been detained in camps there.

China is accused of using torture, forced labour and sterilisations.

It has repeatedly denied all accusations of abuse and says its camps offer vocational training and are needed to fight extremism.

In a statement, China's Foreign Ministry said:

"China is firmly determined to safeguard its national sovereignty, security and development interests, and warns the UK side not to go further down the wrong path."

Beijing has also imposed sanctions on members of the European Parliament.