September 16, 2015
White House Decided to Hold Off on Sanctions Related to Cyber-Security Until After Chinese President's U.S. Visit
The United States will not impose sanctions on China for cyber-security crimes ahead of its president’s visit later this month, sources told The Washington Post.
The White House has no wish to put a damper on Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit a senior Obama administration official told the publication.
In fact, the source said imposing sanctions before the visit, which includes a black tie state dinner at the White House hosted by President Barack Obama, would be a “diplomatic disaster.”
The decision, according to the unnamed official, was arrived at after an all-night meeting last Friday during which both sides reached “substantial agreements” on a number of cyber-security issues.
That does not mean sanctions will not be imposed at a later date, however.
News of the White House’s decision comes just days after Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told a congressional committee that China is a significant threat to the cyber-security of the United States.
“Chinese cyber espionage continues to target a broad spectrum of U.S. interests, ranging from national security information to sensitive economic data and U.S. intellectual property,” Clapper told the committee. “Improved U.S. cyber-security would complicate Chinese cyber-espionage activities by addressing the less sophisticated threats, and raising the cost and risk if China persists.”