May 8, 2018 / 3:05 PM / 9 months ago

China accuses US of hostage-taking at the WTO

FILE PHOTO: Xiangchen Zhang, Chinese Ambassador to the World Trade Organization (WTO) attends an interview with Reuters in Geneva, Switzerland March 22, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

GENEVA (Reuters) - The United States is threatening the World Trade Organization with “three hard blows”, including taking the system of judicial appointments hostage, China’s Ambassador to the WTO, Zhang Xiangchen, told its membership on Tuesday.

Zhang said it was “dangerous and devastating” that the United States was challenging the WTO’s fundamental guiding principles by blocking new judges, by imposing global tariffs on steel and aluminium, and by threatening China with a separate $50 billion (37 billion pounds) package of tariffs.

Reporting by Tom Miles; editing by John Stonestreet

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