U.S. says China backed hackers who targeted COVID-19 vaccine research
This evening. The US accused Chinese hackers trying to steal American vaccine research, a major new escalation to tell you about for the first time the State Department order. We got Chinese consulate here to close over spying charges NBC's Andrea. Mitchell has late details. Flame seen in the courtyard of the Chinese consulate in Houston, overnight appearing to show documents burning after the State Department ordered the consulate to close by Friday only hours after the US accused to Chinese hackers working with China's government of trying to steal research on Kovic. Vaccines, treatment and testing from US companies and others around the world. Houston firefighters responded, but were not permitted in the State Department says the closure is intended to protect American. Intellectual Property and Americans private, information and Senate Intelligence Chief Marco. Rubio tweeted China's Houston Consulate is a massive spy center. Forcing to close is long overdue. We're going to take action to protect. The American people protect our security, our national security and also protect our economy and jobs. The administration dramatic action comes as president. Trump has slap tariffs on China for unfair trade practices and blames. Blames China for not alerting the world to the corona virus. It's a shame that it happened. It shouldn't have happened. China should have stopped causing Democrats who have also been warning about Chinese hacking to worry. The today's action is also an attempt to divert attention from the COVID crisis china-made mistakes. They've needed to be called out for them, but the president is trying to deflect attention from his mistakes in the United States that have led us to have. The is step Tolan the world. China's Foreign Ministry called the move an unprecedented escalation and promised to respond with firm countermeasures, raising fears of an escalating feud between the world's two largest economies.