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Chinese tech firms, research institutes accused of creating ‘brain-control weaponry’

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The Biden administration has blacklisted and sanctioned dozens of Chinese government research institutes and private-sector tech firms, accusing them of weaponizing technology for use at home and abroad, the U.S. departments of Commerce and Treasury announced Thursday.

In particular, the U.S. warned that these entities were working as part of a broader Chinese government strategy to develop and deploy biotechnology, including “brain-control weaponry,” for possible offensive use and as part of its crackdown on Uighurs and other Muslim ethnic minorities — a campaign that the U.S. has determined constitutes genocide.

The penalties seek to bar U.S. technology from being exported to these projects or block their access to the U.S. financial system.

“The scientific pursuit of biotechnology and medical innovation can save lives. Unfortunately, the PRC is choosing to use these technologies to pursue control over its people and its repression of members of ethnic and religious minority groups,” Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said, using an acronym for China’s formal name, the People’s Republic of China.

“We cannot allow U.S. commodities, technologies, and software that support medical science and biotechnical innovation to be diverted toward uses contrary to U.S. national security,” she added in a statement.

 

In total, 12 Chinese research institutes and 22 Chinese tech firms have been blacklisted by her agency and barred from any exports or transfers of U.S. technology, except in limited cases with a license. Chief among them is China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences and its 11 research institutes.

Taken together, they “use biotechnology processes to support Chinese military end-uses and end-users, to include purported brain-control weaponry,” the Commerce Department said in its public notice Thursday.

It’s unclear what kind of weaponry might already exist, but Chinese military leaders have talked for years about biotechnology as creating new “offensive capability,” including “brain control” weapons and “specific ethnic genetic attacks.”

About Charles Igbinidu

Charles Igbinidu is a Public Relations practitioner in Lagos, Nigeria

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