China Diplomatic Visas Harder to Get?

Reports in yesterday's Financial Times were denied today by the State Department regarding harsher standards for Chinese diplomatic visa issuance. The alleged tougher standards coincide with U.S. increased comments regarding human rights violations in China, which are claimed to be the worst in a decade. In response to these allegations, China snubbed the U.S. in scheduled bi-lateral meetings. So, it's in response to such snubbing that the visa issuance issue is raised. 

Whether diplomatic visa issuance is more difficult today than yesterday is simply perceived rather than real, and as a result of the diplomatic tit for tat remains to be seen. 

This all might be as much to do with the world economy as anything.