Beijing: Despite international concern, China's top legislative body on Thursday passed an anti-sanctions law, providing legal backing for Beijing's measures to counter foreign sanctions.

The legislation was passed today at the closing session of the National People's Congress Standing Committee, however, the details of the law have not yet been made public, according to South China Morning Post (SCMP).

This will be the first major legal move by Beijing to retaliate against sanctions imposed by Western nations over China's handling of Xinjiang and Hong Kong.

Tam Yiu-chung, Hong Kong's sole delegate to the NPC Standing Committee, said that the State Council and its agencies would be responsible for coordinating the retaliatory measures under the new law.

"These measures can be applied to organisations and individual, as well as extended to the individuals' spouses, relatives and the organisations that they belong to," he said.

Under Article 6 of the new law, Beijing's retaliatory measures could include the denial of visa application or entry into China, Tam said. Even for visa holders, authorities could declare their document invalid and deport them.

Furthermore, the tangible and intangible properties of individuals could be frozen or remanded and institutions could be restricted from conducting any transaction with the individuals or organisations being targeted. The law also specified that no one in the country help foreign countries implement discriminatory measures, SCMP reported.

Individuals and organisations affected by sanctions could make claims in mainland courts, Tam added.

This comes after the US, the European Union, Britain and Canada sanctioned Chinese officials accused of human rights abuses in Xinjiang, prompting retaliatory counter measures from Beijing.

China has used various tools to respond to pressure from foreign sanctions in the past. In January, the Ministry of Commerce issued a "blocking statute" requiring Chinese companies to report any foreign restrictions on economic or trade activities.