July 17 (UPI) -- China condemned the United States on Friday following a report the Trump administration was considering a travel ban on Chinese Communist Party members.
Beijing's foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Friday at a regular press briefing the move to prohibit Communist Party members and their families from entering the United States would be an act against 1.4 billion Chinese, or the country's entire population.
Such a policy "would go against the interests of the Chinese and American peoples," Hua said. "It is an absurd proposal."
The report of the comprehensive ban from The New York Times on Wednesday included details of a presidential proclamation in draft form. The U.S. plan could even go as far as to revoke the visas of Chinese nationals already in the United States.
On Friday, Hua defended one-party rule, and said China developed under the leadership of the Communist Party, which has remained in power since 1949.
"No country, individual, or power has the right to deny Chinese people's choices, and it does not prevent socialism with Chinese characteristics from moving forward," Hua said.
Trump, according to The Times report, has not finalized the draft plan. The policy faces practical challenges, including identifying party members in order to determine their right to entry. The Chinese Communist Party has 92 million members, the report says.
Party members have also included dissidents. Li Wenliang, the Chinese physician and whistle-blower who died of COVID-19 complications in Wuhan, was a party member, as was Ilham Tolti, the imprisoned Uighur scholar, the South China Morning Post's Beijing correspondent tweeted.
U.S.-China tensions are soaring over visa policy as Chinese analysts say the United States is sending more spy drones over the South China Sea.
The South China Sea Strategic Situation Probing Initiative, a Peking University think tank, said Thursday a U.S. P-8A anti-submarine aircraft and a KC-135R aerial refueling aircraft were seen flying southwest of Taiwan, the Post reported.