The Trump administration is tightening visa guidelines for Chinese journalists in response to the treatment of US journalists in China, as tensions flare between the two nations over the coronavirus. The Department of Homeland Security has issued new regulations, set to take effect Monday, that will limit visas for Chinese reporters to 90 days. There is a potential to extend the visa. Those visas previously didn’t have to be extended unless the employee switched companies, and they were considered open-ended.
Donald Trump has said the Chinese government’s response was slow and inadequate. His administration has lashed out at its geopolitical foe and critical US trade partner, pushing beyond the bounds of established evidence. Trump and allies repeat and express confidence in an unsubstantiated theory linking the origin of the outbreak to a possible accident at a Chinese virology laboratory.
While the virus is believed to have originated in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, most scientists say it was most likely transmitted from bats to humans via an intermediary animal such as the armadillo-like pangolin. That has placed the focus on a wet market in the city where wildlife was sold for food.