U.S. bans cotton imports from major producer in China's Xinjiang region

U.S. bans cotton imports from major producer in China's Xinjiang region

© Reuters. Chinese and U.S. flags flutter in Shanghai © Reuters. Chinese and U.S. flags flutter in Shanghai

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Trump administration expanded economic pressure on China's Xinjiang province on Wednesday, banning cotton imports from a powerful Chinese quasi-military organization that it says uses forced labor from detained Uighur Muslims.

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency said the "Withhold Release Order" would ban cotton and cotton products from the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, one of China's largest producers.

The move is among several the Trump administration has been working on in its final weeks to harden the U.S. position against China, making it harder for President-elect Joe Biden to ease U.S.-China tensions.

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