Around 1,100 Chinese students, who claim to be victims of US political manipulation, are supporting plans to hire a lawyer and oppose the extension of visa restrictions for those applying to study literature and business courses in the US. The restrictions are currently in place for those wishing to study ‘high-tech’ courses.

The students are predominantly from eight leading science universities in China, which have always been US targets as they are believed to have links to the Chinese military. Students at the schools are accused of carrying the mission of espionage and illegal collection of intellectual property.

When did these restrictions start?

In May 2020, Donald Trump banned postgraduate students and researchers from studying or working in the US if they had previously been affiliated with China’s “military-fusion strategy”. This was under Trump’s Presidential Proclamation 10043.

How many students does the proclamation affect?

The US claim the measure will affect “less than 2 percent of Chinese applicants”, whilst Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said the restrictions will affect 16 to 27 percent of the total number of Chinese graduates. The disparity between the two estimations demonstrates the willingness of each state to display the importance of the issue in a way that suits their vested interests.

It is often easy to forget who this impacts the most, as these disagreements are a representation of the ongoing diplomatic battle between the US and China. The students are, hence, keen to take control of the issue.

To read more about this, visit the Global Times website.