China warns nationals traveling to US of high medical bills, violent crime

China warns nationals traveling to US of high medical bills, violent crime
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China's embassy in Washington has issued a notice warning Chinese nationals about high medical bills and violent crime in the U.S.

In a notice posted on the embassy's website, Beijing warned Chinese nationals traveling in the U.S. that they could face pricey medical bills, poor "public security," and warrantless searches and seizures by customs agents. 

"Public security in the United States is not good. Cases of shootings, robberies, and theft are frequent," the statement reads, according to a translation provided by Reuters.

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"Travelers in the United States should be alert to their surroundings and suspicious individuals, and avoid going out alone at night," it adds.

The other warnings mentioned in the statement include the threat of natural disasters and telecommunications fraud. 

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a news briefing on Tuesday that Beijing has a responsibility to warn its citizens about potential dangers they could face while traveling abroad.

"This kind of reminder from the Chinese Embassy in the relevant country, I think this is absolutely a matter that is in the scope of our duty," he said, according to Reuters.

The travel advisory comes amid an escalating trade dispute between Beijing and Washington.

The Trump administration has threatened tariffs on as much as $450 billion in Chinese products, and is poised to impose duties on $34 billion in Chinese goods on Friday. 

Beijing has warned that U.S. tariffs will be met with retaliatory measures, including tariffs on American agricultural products.