Hong Kong police on Tuesday arrested a man who allegedly spray-painted graffiti on the wall and gate of the U.S. Consulate, according to media reports and the police.
Photos from local media including the South China Morning Post showed the English word “hegemony” and the Chinese words for “double standards” painted in white on the gate and a nearby wall.
The vandalism comes amid a deterioration in US-Chinese relations as the nations clash over trade issues and tensions over Taiwan, a self-governed island that China claims is part of its territory.
Police said that they received a report at 5.22 a.m. from the consulate reporting the vandalism. They arrested a 47-year-old man surnamed Wen from mainland China on suspicion of criminal damage.
Offenders found guilty of destroying or damaging property could face a maximum penalty of 10 years in jail.
The consulate did not immediately comment when contacted by The Associated Press.
The graffiti was removed by late Tuesday morning.