HK protesters call for global support

Joe Chow

Joe Chow

The two bills signed by U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday mandate sanctions on Chinese and Hong Kong officials who carry out human rights abuses in Hong Kong, require an annual review of Hong Kong's favourable trade status and prohibit the export to Hong Kong police of certain nonlethal munitions.

Social unrest in Hong Kong escalated recently, resulting in increased conflict with the Hong Kong police, drawing worldwide attention.

This was followed by South Korea's Kospi index (KOSPI) and Japan's Nikkei 225 (N225) moving down 0.1% and 0.4%, respectively.

When the Senate backed the bill, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said the legislation "violates the basic norms of worldwide law and global relations" and "interferes in China's internal affairs".

CHINA'S FOREIGN MINISTRY, as it warned of countermeasures.

"Look, we have to stand with Hong Kong". But given the widespread unrest by protestors calling for greater democracy for Hong Kong, the election is seen as a referendum on Hong Kong's current relationship with Beijing.

Prominent activist Joshua Wong, who was among those who lobbied for the USA laws, said it was remarkable that human rights had triumphed over the U.S.

The legislation signed by Trump was approved unanimously by the U.S. Senate and by all but one lawmaker in the House of Representatives last week.

He says he was hooded, beaten and chained to a metal frame as Chinese secret police sought information on activists involved in the protests and on Britain's purported role.

Taiwan's biggest opposition party the Kuomintang (KMT) said in a statement it was no surprise President Trump signed the act because many countries are concerned at developments in Hong Kong. If we are going to ring the bell of freedom and democracy throughout the world, this is something as a leader and the leader of the free world the president had to do.

She claimed that the U.S. was sending a message that it stands in solidarity with the people of Hong Kong, invoking the bogus "human rights" rhetoric that forms the basis for United States interventions around the world.

Other demonstrations planned over the weekend include a rally by secondary school students, a protest against the use of tear gas near children, and a "march of gratitude" to the USA consulate. Xi took this as a sign that Trump would prioritize trade negotiations unless Beijing sent the military or armed police into Hong Kong.

Hundreds of people chanted pro-democracy slogans at lunchtime rallies around Hong Kong on Friday.

Police teams on Thursday ventured inside a Hong Kong university that was at the centre of the most serious confrontations between police and protesters in six months of unrest in the semi-autonomous Chinese city.

All democracies are concerned about Hong Kong's situation, Tsai said on the sidelines of an event in Kaohsiung, adding: "Hopefully, Hong Kongers will persevere in their pursuit of democracy, while the Hong Kong government should deal with people's appeals for democracy and freedom".

"The Chinese government is determined in opposing foreign interference in Hong Kong's affairs", the statement said.

In addition to complete elimination of the extradition law, Hong Kong's protesters are demanding the authorities stop referring to them as "rioters", to drop criminal charges against those arrested; to conduct an independent inquiry into police brutality and to allow universal suffrage for the Legislative Council and chief executive.

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