Pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong fear China’s national security law will undermine the city’s autonomy [Billy HC Kwok/Getty]

The European Union has criticised China for asserting more control over Hong Kong and suggested the move would have an impact on China-EU relations – but the 27-nation bloc ruled out taking any action against its major trading partner.

“We express our grave concern at the steps taken by China,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Friday after chairing a video meeting of the foreign ministers. “Our relations with China are based on mutual respect and trust. I want to underline this – respect and trust – but this decision calls this into question.”

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On Thursday, the Chinese parliament rubber-stamped a national security

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