Pompeo says U.S. considering welcoming Hong Kong people, entrepreneurs


Washington (Reuters) – The United States is considering the option of welcoming people from Hong Kong, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in remarks released on Monday, in response to China’s push to impose national security legislation in the former British colony.

In remarks made to the American Enterprise Institute on Friday, Pompeo did not specify exactly how Washington would welcome people from Hong Kong and gave no details about immigration quotas or visas. He merely said: “We are taking a look at it.”

President Donald Trump on Friday ordered his administration to begin the process of eliminating special U.S. treatment for Hong Kong to punish China, but stopped short of calling an immediate end to privileges that have helped the territory remain a global financial center.

Last week, Britain has said it was prepared to offer extended visa rights and a pathway to citizenship for almost 3 million Hong Kong residents.

Asked if the United States was considering the possibility to “welcome Hong Kong people to come here and bring their entrepreneurial creativity”, Pompeo, in the interview recorded on Friday said Washington was looking at it.

“We are considering it. I don’t know precisely how it will play out. The British have, as you know, a different relationship. A lot of these folks have British national passports. There’s a long history between Hong Kong and the United Kingdom; it’s very different. But we’re taking a look at it,” he said.

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