6. False: The US demanded the closure of the Chinese Consulate-General in Houston because China did not accord facilities for the reopening of the US Consulate-General in Wuhan and the exemption of nucleic acid testing of returning US diplomats.
True: China has never set up obstacles for the return of diplomats and consular officials of other countries, including the US. Quite the contrary, China has provided necessary facilities for them to perform duties in accordance with law.
◆ On 25 January, the US unilaterally announced the temporary closure of its Consulate-General in Wuhan and the evacuation of the personnel therefrom. China accorded facilities for the departure of the personnel, for which the US expressed appreciation at different levels. Records are available for verifying the fact.
◆ In June, some US diplomats returned to Wuhan. Since then, China has accorded facilities to the US Consulate-General to perform its functions in accordance with law.
◆ On the basis of respecting their privileges and immunities, China has applied nucleic acid testing equally to all foreign diplomats and consular officials entering China. This arrangement is also accepted by the US. The so-called issue of nucleic acid testing is simply an excuse.
7. False: The US side claims that its demand to take over the premises of the Chinese Consulate-General in Houston is consistent with relevant US laws and regulations.
True: The outrageous and unreasonable demand of the US seriously violates a number of international laws.
◆ Both the land and the premises of the Chinese Consulate-General in Houston are properties of the Chinese government.
◆ According to Article 27 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, the sending State may entrust another consular post or diplomatic mission it has in the territory of the receiving State with the custody of the premises of the consular post which has been closed, together with the property contained therein and the consular archives. China is entitled to entrust its Embassy or other consulates-general in the US with the custody of the premises of its Consulate-General in Houston. The unreasonable demand of the US side to take over the premises of the Chinese Consulate-General in Houston seriously violates the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, and infringed on China’s legitimate rights and interests.
◆ Both the land and premises of the Chinese Consulate-General in Houston are China’s state property. Even if relevant premises are not covered by consular privileges and immunities, the relevant property is still protected by international law.