Hong Kong: China calls pro-democracy protesters "political virus to wipe out"
Protesters mobilized to welcome the release of prisoner pro-democracy activist Chan Kin-man, in Hong Kong on March 14, 2020. ISAAC LAWRENCE / AFP
Text by: RFI Follow
The Chinese office of the business of Hong Kong declared this Wednesday May 6 that the city would never find peace as long as the "violent demonstrators in black", qualified as "political virus" preaching independence with regard to China, have not all been eliminated. A statement which comes on the back of arrests of several pro-democracy leaders in the former British colony.
The tone has probably never been more threatening. The office of Hong Kong and Macao warns: the central power in Beijing will not sit idly
by " this reckless mad force " at work and it is ultimately responsible for maintaining order and preserving national security.
" The scorched earth policy of violent demonstrators in black is a political virus in Hong Kong society and a great enemy of the principle of one country two systems," the office said in a statement. Until the protesters are eliminated, Hong Kong will never be calm. "
Participants in the vast protests that took place for months last year in Hong Kong suspect China for their part to want to reverse this principle which allows the inhabitants of the semi-autonomous city to enjoy a number of freedoms . Beijing rejects these accusations.
Containment, an opportunity to strengthen Beijing's hold
Riot police dispersed on April 26 a crowd of approximately 300 people demonstrating for respect for democratic values. It was the first major demonstration in Hong Kong since the ban proclaimed about a month earlier from any public gathering in the face of the coronavirus epidemic.
Firm tone announcement comes as supporters of democratic movement in Hong Kong become increasingly concerned that China will tighten grip on former British colony with population containment measures taken to curb the spread of Covid-19.
This Tuesday, May 5, three veterans of the pro-democracy fight appeared in a court of the former British colony: ex-deputies Lee Cheuk-yan, Yeung Sum as well as press magnate Jimmy Lai . The three are accused of taking part in a banned demonstration on August 31, 2019, organized to mark the fifth anniversary of Beijing's refusal to allow elections by universal suffrage. A demonstration which ended in violent clashes between participants and the police.
► Listen: Hong Kong, a year after the protests started: interview with MP Fernando Cheung
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- Human rights
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