Recent developments cast a shadow over the future of China-UK relations. First, the UK broadcasting regulator revoked the licence of the China Global Television Network to broadcast in the UK. Second, the UK Foreign Secretary has called for UN investigators to be given urgent access to Uighur Camps in Xinjiang.
China thinks before it acts. It knows how to respond in defiance of attacks on its policies and its language can be blunt but the responses are always thought through. What is the context? What are the issues? What are the forces at work?
We start with PM Johnson’s hoped for Tilt Towards China. He needs China now that Brexit has happened + a US Trade Deal is not a priority for the US. but Johnson is under pressure from the Henry Jackson Society + right-wing Tory MP’s + now the UK human rights lobby have taken a critical stance on the Uighurs issue.
China knows the politics of the issue. It will watch + wait + decide whether it is more appropriate to confront the UK or to keep a low profile.
Certainly, the decision of the UK Govt to send its new aircraft carrier to the S China Sea adds to the negatives presently in play.