China rebukes EU, US politicians for 'interfering in domestic affairs'

The Chinese flag fluttering behind barriers outside the China Liaison Office in Hong Kong on Aug 31, 2019.
The Chinese flag fluttering behind barriers outside the China Liaison Office in Hong Kong on Aug 31, 2019.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

BEIJING • China has accused some US and European politicians of "interfering in its domestic affairs" over their comments on Hong Kong protests that were deemed as supportive of demonstrators.

The Hong Kong branch of China's Foreign Ministry yesterday described the demonstrators as criminals and extremists, and said support for them equates to "favouring and condoning lawless and violent acts".

Hong Kong police arrested several prominent opposition figures on Friday and warned that other protesters could share their fate, raising tensions as the authorities seek to quell pro-democracy demonstrations that have raged for almost three months.

US Senator Chuck Schumer said on Friday that the detentions were a sign of "weakness and fear", and that the Chinese Communist Party had broken its promise to the people of Hong Kong.

"The remarks made by some US politicians disrespect the strict law enforcement by the Hong Kong police," the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Hong Kong said.

"The real purpose is to let criminals continue to plague Hong Kong and completely destroy the rule of law in Hong Kong."

In a separate statement, the office opposed remarks by Ms Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

Ms Mogherini told reporters on Friday that developments in Hong Kong were extremely worrying and the authorities should respect freedoms and the right of people to demonstrate peacefully.

"Some politicians in the EU are confusing right and wrong to express their so-called concerns about this," the office said.

 
 
 

"At the moment when Hong Kong is on the verge of restoring the rule of law or sliding into a bottomless abyss, it is totally wrong for some politicians in the EU to confuse black and white and not to condemn the violent and illegal acts by extremists."

The office had previously bashed the United States for interfering in the Hong Kong unrest.

It said earlier last month that some US lawmakers incite violence with their words and actions and show they are the "black hand" behind protests in Hong Kong.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on September 01, 2019, with the headline 'China rebukes EU, US politicians for 'interfering in domestic affairs''. Print Edition | Subscribe