China asks US not to interfere in its internal affairs

Beijing: China today lashed out at the US for describing jail sentences given to four human rights activists as "politically motivated", saying American accusations are groundless and constituted interference in its internal affairs.

"The US accusations are groundless and China urged the United States to respect the facts, speak and act cautiously, and stop making irresponsible remarks on the case," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said.

She said that China firmly opposes American interference in its internal affairs and judicial sovereignty.

Hua was commenting on the remarks made by US State Department deputy spokesperson Mark Toner concerning the conviction of four Chinese human rights activists.

Toner had said the charges against the activists were "vague and apparently politically motivated" and urged Chinese officials to release the detainees and remove restrictions on their freedom of movement and professional activities.

"China is a country under the rule of law, and Chinese judicial authorities deal with related cases in accordance with law so that the legitimate rights and interests of defendants could be effectively protected," Hua was quoted as saying by the state-run Xinhua news agency.