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BEIJING: China announced Monday visa restrictions on US citizens who have "behaved egregiously" over Hong Kong, ahead of the expected approval by Chinese lawmakers of a controversial national security law for the city.

The country is moving forward on a security law that would punish subversion and other offences against the state in Hong Kong, which saw massive and sometimes violent pro-democracy protests last year.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump's administration said it was restricting US visas for a number of unspecified Chinese officials for infringing on the autonomy of the Asian financial hub. In response, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said Monday that the US "scheme... to obstruct the passage of the Hong Kong national security law will never prevail". "To target the US's above wrongful actions, China has decided to impose visa restrictions against American individuals who have behaved egregiously on matters concerning Hong Kong," Zhao said.

China's top lawmaking committee is expected to adopt the law during sessions that end on Tuesday. The legislation was approved by Beijing's rubber-stamp parliament little more than six weeks after it was unveiled, sending shockwaves through semi-autonomous Hong Kong and beyond.