The US has blacklisted 28 Chinese organisations for their alleged involvement in abuses against ethnic Uighurs in China’s Xinjiang province.
The organisations are now on the so-called Entity List, which bars them from buying products from US companies without approval from Washington.
The 28 targets include both government agencies and technology companies specialising in surveillance equipment.
It is not the first time the US has put Chinese groups under a trade ban.
In May, the Trump administration added telecommunications giant Huawei to the Entity List because of security fears over its products.
A Commerce Department filing said the organisations are “implicated in human rights violations and abuses”.
Rights groups say Beijing is severely persecuting the mostly Muslim Uighurs in detention camps. China calls these “vocational training centres” to combat extremism.
Who has the US targeted?
The Commerce Department said in its decision on Monday that these 28 entities are implicated in “China’s campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, and high-technology surveillance against Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other members of Muslim minority groups.”
Xinjiang province’s Public Security Bureau is on the list, along with 19 other smaller government agencies.
Hikvision, Dahua Technology and Megvii Technology are among eight commercial groups on the list, all of which specialise in facial-recognition technology.
Hikvision is one of the largest surveillance equipment manufacturers in the world.