The US Commerce Department’s decision follows last month’s announcement of adding five other Chinese companies to the list following allegations of forced labor in the Chinese sector. US President Joe Biden has blamed China for this.
It is not yet clear which companies are involved. It is expected to be announced later on Friday. The White House declined to comment.
This is not the first time the US government has targeted Chinese companies linked to allegations of high-tech surveillance activities in Xinjiang. In 2019, the Trump administration added some artificial intelligence start-ups from China to its blacklist for its treatment of Muslim minorities.
China denies allegations of genocide and forced labor in Xinjiang. The country says tougher policies in the region are necessary to deal with separatists and religious extremists who have plotted attacks and created tensions between the predominantly Muslim Uighurs and the Han, China’s largest ethnic group.
Experts from the United Nations and human rights groups estimate that more than a million people have been detained in Xinjiang camps in recent years. Most of them are Uighurs and other Muslim minorities.
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