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Chinese Graduates of Columbia University attend the commencement ceremony in New York City, United States, on May 20, 2015.
Image: Imago/Xinhua

US revokes visas of over 1,000 Chinese students

September 10, 2020

This is the first official estimate given by the US government after President Donald Trump restricted the entry of some Chinese students and researchers into the US in May.

https://p.dw.com/p/3iFGz

The US State Department announced on Wednesday that over 1,000 Chinese students had had their visas revoked by the US government as of this week.

This is the first official estimate given by the US government after President Donald Trump restricted the entry of some Chinese students and researchers into the US in May. At the time, Trump had said that the move was undertaken as the Chinese students were being used to acquire sensitive US technologies and intellectual property. 

The US has also accused China of trying to steal university research into COVID-19, and said that the number of espionage cases from the Chinese government has risen.

Graduates wave Chinese national flags during the commencement ceremony of the 264th Academic Year of Columbia University in New York, the United States, on May 16, 2018.
Chinese students pay well over $10 billion per year in tuition and other fees at US universitiesImage: Imago Images/Xinhua/M. Nagle

"We continue to welcome legitimate students and scholars from China who do not further the Chinese Communist Party's goals of military dominance," said a state department spokeswoman.

The department didn't divulge details of whose visas were revoked. However, several Chinese students enrolled in US universities told Reuters news agency on Wednesday that they had received notice that their visas were canceled. 

Read more:  Coronavirus and Chinese threats: Double whammy for Australian universities

Chinese students a big source of income for US universities

Around 370,000 Chinese students were enrolled at US universities in 2018-19 and these students paid in the region of $14 billion (roughly €12 billion) to US universities, largely from tuition and other fees.

US officials said that the visa revocations affect only a small portion of these students. "The high-risk graduate students and research scholars made ineligible under this proclamation represent a small subset of the total number of Chinese students and scholars coming to the United States," said a State Department spokeswoman.

Tensions rise between USA and China: Is it a new Cold War?

am/msh (AFP, Reuters)

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