“On the morning of July 24, 2020, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China notified the U.S. Embassy in China that China has decided to revoke the permission for the establishment and operation of the U.S. Consulate General in Chengdu and put forward specific requirements for the Consulate General to stop all business and activities,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement Friday.

China has officially ordered the U.S. to close its consulate in the southwestern city of Chengdu in an expected retaliation of the closure of the China consulate in Houston, Texas earlier this week. Beijing defended its response as, “a legitimate and necessary response to the unreasonable actions of the United States.”

The China statement also said that “the U.S. unilaterally provoked the incident and had “violated international law and the basic norms of international relations” by ordering the Houston consulate closure.”

The closure of the Chengdu would be roughly reciprocal to the 60 or so Chinese diplomats stationed in Houston.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo defended the move to close the Houston Chinese consulate calling it, “a hub of spying and intellectual property theft” in a fiery speech he delivered at the Nixon Library in California on Thursday.

For additional information visit our friends at ABC News.

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