In one attack, the hackers weaponized an electronic file with a letter that had a note of condolence from Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s secretary of state.
Edward WongNEW: Hackers suspected of working for China penetrated the Vatican’s systems and those of representatives in Hong Kong, a US research group says. The attack came months before the Vatican & Beijing open talks over bishops. w/ @SangerNYT@jasondhorowitz.
Top aides to President Trump want to leave a lasting legacy of ruptured ties between the two powers. China’s aggression has been helping their cause.
Edward WongNEW: Trump aides aim to use tough actions to create a permanent state of confrontation & competition with China. They're working fast because they fear a Biden win — and want to leave a legacy of ruptured ties. China’s aggressions help. w/ @stevenleemyers.
The move has been opposed internally by arms control officials and lawmakers trying to limit the proliferation of such drones, especially in countries like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Edward WongNEW: Trump officials plan to announce today they'll allow sales of large armed drones — bypassing an international arms control agreement banning the exports. Some officials & lawmakers oppose the move and are anxious about sales to Saudi Arabia and UAE.
The wife of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been integral to his meteoric rise. But her close involvement in his career has attracted unwelcome scrutiny.
Edward WongDefinitive profile of Susan Pompeo — who manages every aspect of Mike Pompeo’s career & uses taxpayer resources as a volunteer at State Dept. She did the same at CIA, where she had office space in Langley. She oversees personnel. By @dlippman@nahaltoosi.
The Trump administration told Chinese diplomats in Texas to clear out by Friday. China warned it would retaliate.
Edward WongUPDATE: @nytimes got 7-page document w/ details on FBI investigations into China's Houston consulate, incl. on trade secrets theft & coercion of Chinese citizens. And PLA officer is hiding from arrest warrant in SF consulate. w/ @jakesNYT@stevenleemyers.
A newly public copy of the whistle-blower’s complaint says that top officials who were protecting the secretary of state blocked the whistle-blower from addressing the issue internally.
Edward WongState Dept. whistleblower said they witnessed misconduct by @SecPompeo, but was blocked from further action by executive office & legal aides. Other officials continued supporting Pompeo’s behavior, a new document says. State IG Linick began an inquiry.
The United States needs to formally acknowledge the scale of the atrocities.
Edward WongHere, @RayhanAsat & @yonahdiamond call on State Dept. to officially recognize the atrocities against ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims in Xinjiang as genocide by Chinese officials. @RayhanAsat has an imprisoned brother, Ekpar.
Hospitals have been ordered to bypass the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and send all patient information to a central database in Washington, raising questions about transparency.
Edward WongWhat would we say of this kind of order in China or Russia? “The Trump administration has ordered hospitals to bypass the CDC and send all Covid-19 patient information to a central database in Washington beginning on Wednesday.” By @SherylNYT.
A sweeping national security law passed by China in June has unsettled news organizations and created uncertainty about the city’s prospects as a hub for journalism in Asia.
Edward WongHarbinger of changes among foreign cos. in Hong Kong: @nytimes had its Asia editing hub in HK for years, but is now moving some editors to Seoul because of the new national security law. And some NYT journalists are having trouble w/ work permit renewals.
The measure, over human rights abuses against mainly the Uighur ethnic group, is likely to ratchet up tensions between Washington and Beijing.
Edward WongUS imposes sanctions against some senior officials in China overseeing the internment camps in which 1 million or more Muslims have been held. Trump told Xi to keep building the camps & blocked the sanctions, proposed by aides in 2018. w/ @pranshuverma_.
The FBI is examining exiled Chinese businessman Guo Wengui and the money used to fund his media efforts in the U.S., including his work with Steve Bannon, a former senior adviser to President Trump, according to people familiar with the matter.
Edward WongFBI is investigating Guo Wengui, a Chinese tycoon in New York, and the work of a media company he runs that paid Steve Bannon $1 million starting in 2018.
A battle involving Michael Pack and a U.S.-funded tech group revolves around software from Falun Gong, the secretive, anti-Beijing spiritual movement with pro-Trump elements.
Edward WongNEW: GOP & Dem senators say Trump / Bannon ally Michael Pack endangers Open Technology Fund, a US group aiding global internet access. Pack fired fund’s heads. He & State Dept. are being pushed by allies of Falun Gong to divert $$$. w/ @pranshuverma_.
Surging outbreaks in the U.S. Embassy and the kingdom and quiet congressional pressure led the State Department belatedly to allow voluntary departures. Some demand more action.
Edward WongNEW: US embassy officials in Saudi Arabia feel endangered by surging virus. They thought State Dept. leaders & Amb. Abizaid were putting employees at risk, so secretly got info to Congress. Trump is sensitive about MBS & Saudi ties. w/ @MarkMazzettiNYT.
Discussions are underway about ending an informal review process because lawmakers from both parties have held up arms sales to Saudi Arabia over civilian casualties in Yemen.
Edward WongNEW: Trump officials may end Congressional review process of arms sales. Officials are angry over lawmakers halting sales to Saudi Arabia, whose war in Yemen has killed thousands. Pompeo, Esper & WH officials are involved. w/ @laforgia_@EricSchmittNYT.