Amid the ongoing trade war between the United States and China, Beijing has sent a strong warning to the Trump administration that it will not be 'blackmailed' and pressurised.
"Protectionism will only hurt oneself, and unilateral moves will bring damage to all," Foreign Minister Wang Yi told the UN General Assembly gathering of world leaders.
"China will not be blackmailed or yield to pressure," Wang said, describing his country's moves as defending not just its own interests but the system of global trade.
Noting that China spent more than a decade negotiating its membership in that system, he said his country has fulfilled its promises and is committed to resolving disputes within the framework of the World Trade Organisation.
"State-to-state relations must be based on credibility, not on willful revocation of commitments," he said.
Despite often touting his good personal relations with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Trump has criticised China for not opening its markets and says such an approach is unacceptable.
Russia, which also has vigorously denied accusations of meddling in US elections, was due to speak later.
China has been asserting itself on the world stage under Xi, though it continually stands by a foreign policy of noninterference in the affairs of other countries. It has long used that policy to rebuke other countries that criticise its record on human rights.
The country has come under increased criticism as its global profile has risen and its economic interests — and accompanying political clout — have spread from Asia to Africa, Latin America and the Middle East.
Besides China's clash with the Trump administration, some Africans have protested what they say is an attempted Chinese takeover of their countries.
Trump increased tariffs Monday on $200 billion of Chinese goods. Beijing responded by imposing penalties on $60 billion of American products. That was on top of an earlier duty increase by both sides on $50 billion of each other's goods.
The US says China steals or pressures foreign companies to hand over technology, and that Beijing's plans for state-led development of global competitors in robotics and other technologies violate its market-opening obligations and might erode US industrial leadership.
China has accused the Trump administration of bullying.
A Chinese official said that China cannot hold talks on ending the trade dispute while the US "holds a knife" to Beijing's throat by hiking tariffs.
The next day, Trump stunned other members of the Security Council by saying that China was meddling in the midterm elections because it opposes his tough trade policies.
When questioned by reporters, Trump said there was "plenty" of evidence but didn't immediately provide details. Instead, he zeroed in on China's efforts to flood the US with ads and statements against Trump's billions of dollars in tariffs on Chinese goods.
Beijing was quick to respond, urging Washington to stop slandering China and claiming that the Chinese government does not interfere in other countries' internal affairs.