President Trump is exploring a range of actions that he could take against the Chinese government if it proceeds with a new law to curb protests in Hong Kong, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Wednesday.
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"There's a whole menu of potential things he could do," Ross told FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo. "And I'm sure they're working right now on how to refine the thinking and come up with something that's an appropriate response."
One year after last summer's chaotic and frequently violent anti-government protests, the Chinese government has announced that it plans to pass a controversial national security law to outlaw secession, subversion, terrorism and foreign interference in Hong Kong.
The National People’s Congress, essentially a rubber stamp, is expected to ratify the bill Thursday. Legislation could be finalized this summer.
"I don't think we should get out ahead of the president," Ross said. "This is a very complex situation. Our hearts go out to the individual civilians in Hong Kong. We're with them, but the president will have to decide what exactly is the appropriate response to it."
On Tuesday, Trump said the U.S. is working on a strong response to the bill, which has reignited protests in Hong Kong, and could announce action by the end of the week.
“We’re doing something now. I think you’ll find it very interesting," Trump said during a White House press briefing. "I’ll be talking about it over the next couple of days."
Hong Kong, a former British colony, was returned to China in 1997 under an agreement known as “one country, two systems,” which allowed the city to retain a “high-degree of autonomy” for 50 years. The agreement expires in 2047.