Date: September 16, 2015
By Tal Kopan, CNN
Washington (CNN)President Barack Obama signaled a readiness to slap Beijing with sanctions over their alleged rampant hacking of American companies on Wednesday, continuing to ramp up pressure ahead of the Chinese president’s state visit to Washington.
Speaking at the Business Roundtable in Washington on Wednesday, Obama seemed to personally address the issue of sanctions for the first time. The White House had previously confirmed they were in the works.
“We are preparing a number of measures that will indicate to the Chinese that this is not just a matter of us being mildly upset but is something that will put significant strains on the bilateral relationship if not resolved,” Obama warned, though he didn’t specifically use the term sanctions. “And that we are prepared to take some countervailing actions in order to get their attention.”
But Obama left the door open to holding off on the sanctions, putting the ball in Beijing’s court.
“My hope is that it gets resolved short of that,” he added.