A man displays the Hong Kong colonial flag on the anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China from Britain in Hong Kong, Wednesday, July. 1, 2020.
FILE - A man displays the Hong Kong colonial flag on the anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China from Britain, in Hong Kong, July 1, 2020.

SHANGHAI - A new British policy allowing Hong Kong residents to claim British citizenship is a "violation of international law" and interferes with China's internal affairs, the Chinese Embassy in London said Thursday.

Britain's interior minister, Priti Patel, said in a written statement Wednesday that Hong Kong people with British National Overseas visas would be able to apply for citizenship starting in  January 2021.

The Chinese Embassy said in a statement posted on its website that Beijing would respond strongly, adding that Britain should immediately correct its mistakes.

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