China accused the US of of attempting to maintain a monopoly on the memory chip market after the country severed trade ties with a state-owned company accused of stealing trade secrets, Reuters reported.

The news agency said an unnamed Chinese official spoke out at a recent World Trade Organisation (WTO) meeting after the US indicted Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Company (FJICC) for intellectual property theft.

Following the indictment, the US implemented blocks on FJICC exports along with sales of goods and services to the company, moves the then US Attorney General Jeff Sessions said would prevent the company profiting from “technology it stole” from Micron Technology during legal proceedings.

However, the Chinese official argued the action went against WTO rules and claimed “the real purpose of the US measures is to maintain the monopoly interests of the US DRAM industry,” Reuters said, citing a transcript of the meeting.

The official called the charges “unwarranted”, adding the country opposes “the presumption of guilt” made by the US in cutting off FJICC.

China’s response to the US action comes during a trade spat between the countries. The pair have hiked tariffs on tech products (among other goods) and have also resulted in the US pushing Chinese vendors including Huawei and ZTE, out of the market citing national security concerns.