Tag Archives: Kong

Chinese military personnel parade near Hong Kong border: AFP

Chinese military personnel parade near Hong Kong border: AFPThousands of Chinese military personnel waving red flags paraded at a sports stadium in a city across the border from Hong Kong on Thursday, an AFP reporter witnessed. Armoured vehicles were also seen inside the stadium in Shenzhen, with the event taking place as concerns build that China may intervene to end 10 weeks of unrest in Hong Kong. State-run media reported this week that the elements of the People’s Armed Police (PAP), which is under the command of the Central Military Commission, were assembling in Shenzhen.



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Chinese military personnel parade near Hong Kong border: AFP

Chinese military personnel parade near Hong Kong border: AFPThousands of Chinese military personnel waving red flags paraded at a sports stadium in a city across the border from Hong Kong on Thursday, an AFP reporter witnessed. Armoured vehicles were also seen inside the stadium in Shenzhen, with the event taking place as concerns build that China may intervene to end 10 weeks of unrest in Hong Kong. State-run media reported this week that the elements of the People’s Armed Police (PAP), which is under the command of the Central Military Commission, were assembling in Shenzhen.



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As China faces fate on Hong Kong, America and other democracies face a choice

As China faces fate on Hong Kong, America and other democracies face a choiceDonald Trump tweets as Xi Jinping lines up his military tanks and Hong Kong protesters wave American flags and sing the U.S. national anthem: Our view



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Hong Kong police: not aware of any military plans by China

Hong Kong police: not aware of any military plans by ChinaThree senior Hong Kong police officers said Thursday that they are not aware of any plans for Chinese forces to join efforts to quell mass demonstrations in the territory, as images this week showed paramilitary exercises in a neighboring mainland city. The officers added that they are unsure whether they would be informed ahead of time if Chinese paramilitary or army forces were deployed in Hong Kong. The largely peaceful rallies attended by tens of thousands of Hong Kong residents have increasingly concluded in clashes between some protesters and police.



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China says won't 'sit by' on Hong Kong, Trump urges Xi to meet protesters

China says won't 'sit by' on Hong Kong, Trump urges Xi to meet protestersBeijing warned Thursday that it will not “sit by and watch” the unrest unfolding in Hong Kong, as US President Donald Trump urged his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping to meet with pro-democracy protesters and make a deal. Amid growing concerns that China is considering direct intervention in the crisis, US National Security Advisor John Bolton warned it against creating a “new” Tiananmen Square, referring to the infamous 1989 crackdown on protesters in Beijing.



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Hong Kong protesters apologise after violence in airport

Hong Kong protesters apologise after violence in airportHong Kong protesters yesterday apologised for "over-reacting" during heated clashes at the city's airport where suspected Chinese spies were detained and beaten by some demonstrators. Flights resumed at Hong Kong’s international airport on Wednesday after Tuesday's stand off ended in violent confrontations between pro-democracy protesters and riot police. Hundreds of flights were cancelled on Tuesday after activists blocked the terminal and clashed with police in chaotic scenes that saw officers fire pepper spray and one draw his gun. “It is not our intention to cause delays to your travels,” read a formal statement issued by protesters on Wednesday night, “we ask for your understanding and forgiveness as young people in Hong Kong continue to fight for freedom.” "After months of prolonged resistance, we are frightened, angry and exhausted," it continued. "Some of us have become easily agitated and over-reacted last night." Beijing seized on the chaotic scenes to condemn the protesters on Wednesday for “near-terrorism” at Hong Kong airport, denouncing them for “violent acts” after they surrounded two men, fuelled by suspicions that they were undercover police or spies.  It later emerged that one was a traveller at the airport, and the other, a reporter for China’s Global Times newspaper, a state media outlet controlled by the Communist Party. China has ramped up its rhetoric of the protests lately, sending ominous signals that military and police officers were ready to deploy at a moment’s notice to restore order.  On Wednesday the US State Department said it was concerned about movements of Chinese forces on the border and urged Beijing to honor the territory's autonomy. "The United States is deeply concerned by reports of Chinese paramilitary movement along the Hong Kong border," a spokesperson said. "The United States strongly urges Beijing to adhere to its commitments in the Sino-British Joint Declaration to allow Hong Kong to exercise a high degree of autonomy." China on Wednesday denied requests for two US Navy ships to visit Hong Kong, the Pacific Fleet said on Tuesday. The USS Green Bay, an amphibious dock landing ship, was to stop in Hong Kong on Saturday, while the guided missile cruiser USS Lake Erie planned a port call there next month. Early this month, Beijing demanded that US diplomats based in Hong Kong "stop interfering" in the city's affairs, after reports that they met with pro-democracy activists. US President Donald Trump, however, faced criticism at home on Tuesday for avoiding harsh words over Beijing's response to the protesters, who object to sliding freedoms in the semi-autonomous global financial center. A US Navy ship last visited Hong Kong in April. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab tweeted Tuesday: “Concerning to see what’s happening in Hong Kong and the worrying pictures of clashes between police & protesters at the airport. As I said to Carrie Lam during my call last week, we condemn the violence & encourage constructive dialogue to find a peaceful way forward.”  Hong Kong protests | Read more And on Tuesday the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights urged Hong Kong to exercise restraint and investigate evidence of its forces firing tear gas at protesters in ways banned under international law. Security at the airport was tighter than usual on Wednesday and authorities had obtained an injunction preventing any further protests at the site, although there were doubts as to its efficacy. Some entrances were closed and armed police patrolled by check-in counters in the departures hall. Airlines were working to rebook thousands of stranded passengers after hundreds of flights were delayed or cancelled this week after demonstrators flooded the departures terminal and arrivals hall. A handful of demonstrators remained on Wednesday but operations otherwise largely returned to normal.  The protesters sat on the ground sharing snacks and waving posters, some of which apologised for the disruption. The airport has been flooded by activists since last Friday as they argue it is the last safe refuge from tear gas, which cannot be fired inside without hitting foreign tourists.  Last weekend, violence escalated significantly when riot police fired tear gas into a subway station. “It is as a last resort that we have moved the protest to the airport,” demonstrators said in a statement.  “After months of prolonged resistance, we are frightened, angry and exhausted. Some of us have become easily agitated and over-reacted last night. For this we feel pained and dispirited and would like to express our most sincere apologies.”  British comedian Bill Bailey was caught up in the chaos with his family while on a layover from Bali back to London. At HK airport tonight , protesters were concerned for our safety, they offered water and apologised for the inconvenience. Police arrived try to enter Terminal 1 but were hugely outnumbered and retreated . Riot police turned up and it kicked off— Bill Bailey (@BillBailey) August 13, 2019 "I think the scale of protests is extraordinary," he told The Telegraph. "We've been coming to Hong Kong for over 20 years now; I've worked here, and we've never seen anything like it." “Everyone’s been good natured, very polite, very respectful. Protesters came up to us and offered us food and drink, and said 'sorry you’ve had to wait,' and are constantly apologising for the inconvenience, hoping that we understand.” Hong Kong is facing its worst political crisis since the former British colony was returned to Chinese rule. Millions first came to the streets against an extradition proposal that would have sent people to face trial in mainland China, where the Communist Party controls the courts.  Anger has risen steadily against city leaders for failing to make any concessions and the police for escalating crowd-control tactics, shooting tear gas, rubber bullets and bean bag rounds ending almost all protest in violence. Last night Hong Kong police fired teargas at hundreds of protesters who had gathered outside a police station in the residential area of Sham Shui Po in Kowloon. Witnesses at the scene saw police shoot several rounds with little warning at demonstrators who had been shining laser beams at the police station and burning joss papers on the roadside.



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Hong Kong airport protesters retreat, but city in turmoil

Hong Kong airport protesters retreat, but city in turmoilPro-democracy protesters retreated from Hong Kong’s airport on Wednesday following two days of hugely disruptive rallies that turned violent and plunged the global financial hub further into turmoil. The protests ended early Wednesday morning following a series of clashes in which a policeman drew his gun after being beaten by demonstrators and other officers fired pepper spray. The rallies paralysed one of the world’s busiest travel hubs, deepening a 10-week crisis that is the biggest challenge to Chinese rule of Hong Kong since its 1997 British handover.



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'Sorry for the inconvenience': Hong Kong protesters apologized to furious passengers after the city's airport was paralyzed for a second day

'Sorry for the inconvenience': Hong Kong protesters apologized to furious passengers after the city's airport was paralyzed for a second dayHong Kong protesters used carts to block departure gates, sending a message to the government and drawing attention to alleged police brutality.



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Beijing 'preparing tanks at Hong Kong border', warns Trump as protesters clash with police at airport

Beijing 'preparing tanks at Hong Kong border', warns Trump as protesters clash with police at airportDonald Trump warned that China was moving troops to the Hong Kong border as protesters clashed with riot police at the city's international airport for a second time on Tuesday night. Scuffles broke out after protesters allegedly detained two men, accusing them of being undercover Chinese officials. One of the men was bound with cable ties and appeared semi-conscious as protesters displayed his belongings on the floor. Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times, said the man was a reporter for the Communist Party mouthpiece newspaper. Trouble began as a number of regular police officers entered the airport without riot gear to assist paramedics after one of the men collapsed. Protesters drove the police out of the terminal building and shortly afterwards around 50 riot police arrived. Police used pepper spray and made five arrests as scenes briefly turned violent. In one flashpoint, protesters cornered a police officer and started beating him with his own baton. The officer had been trying to arrest a pro-democracy protester, but was beaten back by the crowd. As he was shoved to the floor, he drew his gun. The protesters immediately leapt back. Had he fired, the consequences for Hong Kong and its young army of activists could have been dire. But the officer held his nerve and colleagues came to his aid. Cameramen and photographers film a detained man, who protesters claimed was a police officer from mainland China Credit: Vincent Yu/AP About 30 protesters remained at the airport early on Wednesday while workers scrubbed it clean of blood and debris from overnight. Check-in counters reopened to queues of weary travellers who had waited overnight for their flights. Meanwhile, Chinese paramilitary police were assembling across the border in the city of Shenzhen for exercises. While China has yet to threaten sending in the army – as it did against pro-democracy protesters in Beijing in 1989 – the Shenzhen exercises were a sign of its ability to crush the demonstrations, even at the cost to Hong Kong's reputation as a safe haven for business and international exchange. Images on the internet showed armored personnel carriers belonging to the People's Armed Police driving in a convoy on Monday towards the site of the exercises. Mr Trump said in a tweet: "Our Intelligence has informed us that the Chinese Government is moving troops to the Border with Hong Kong. Everyone should be calm and safe!" He retweeted a video purporting to show army trucks queuing in Shenzhen, the Chinese city that borders Hong Kong.  Disturbing video taken in Shenzhen just across the boarder with HongKong. Something extraordinarily bad is about happen. ChinaHongKongProtestsDemocracySaveHongKongpic.twitter.com/Gad5R5HVZL— Alexandre Krauss (@AlexandreKrausz) August 12, 2019 The US president, who is embroiled in a major trade dispute with China, added: "Many are blaming me, and the United States, for the problems going on in Hong Kong. I can’t imagine why?" Ten weeks of increasingly violent clashes between police and protesters have roiled the Asian financial hub as thousands of residents chafe at a perceived erosion of freedoms and autonomy under Chinese rule. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights urged Hong Kong to exercise restraint and investigate evidence of its forces firing tear gas at protesters in ways banned under international law. China later rejected what it called a "wrongful statement" by the UN, saying it amounted to interference in its domestic affairs. At a news conference in the government headquarters complex, which is fortified behind 6-foot (1.8-m) -high water-filled barricades, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam said: "Take a minute to look at our city, our home." Protesters surround a man carrying a t-shirt baring the words "I love police" who protesters claimed was a police officer from mainland China Credit: AP Her voice cracked as she added: "Can we bear to push it into the abyss and see it smashed to pieces?" Ms Lam’s repeated refusals to make any concessions or show sympathy towards protesters, some of whom have been injured as police shoot tear gas and rubber bullets, has only upset them more and boosted public support for the activists plunging the city into its worst political crisis in decades. Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, tweeted: "Concerning to see what's happening in Hong Kong and the worrying pictures of clashes between police & protesters at the airport. As I said to Carrie Lam during my call last week, we condemn the violence & encourage constructive dialogue to find a peaceful way forward." Chris Patten, the last governor under British colonial rule, said that Hong Kong was "close to the abyss," because Ms Lam refused to withdraw a controversial extradition bill. "I think there is a degree of frustration and anger at the government refusing to give any sensible ground at all, which probably provokes more violence," Mr Patten told BBC Radio 4's Today programme. He urged Boris Johnson to take a firmer line with Beijing, and to put pressure on visiting National Security Advisor John Bolton for US help. Tom Tugendhat, chairman of the foreign affairs committee, said the UK should extend citizenship rights to Hong Kong citizens. The White House has also urged "all sides" to avoid violence in Hong Kong. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican, on Monday praised protesters for standing up to the Chinese Communist Party, warning that the "world is watching" for any violent crackdown by authorities. Mr Trump earlier said he hoped no one would be killed. The crisis was a "very tricky situation," the president told reporters in New Jersey. "I hope it works out peacefully, nobody gets hurt, nobody gets killed," he said. Hong Kong protests | Read more China this week condemned some protesters for using dangerous tools to attack police, calling the clashes "sprouts of terrorism". They present President Xi Jinping with one of his biggest challenges since he came to power in 2012. Hong Kong legal experts say Beijing might be paving the way to use anti-terrorism laws to try to quell the demonstrations. The clashes at the airport followed an unprecedented airport shutdown on Monday. Again on Tuesday, thousands of black-clad protesters jammed the terminal, chanting, singing and waving banners. Floors and walls were covered with missives penned by activists and other artwork. Initially, the scene was peaceful as knots of protesters spoke to travellers, explaining their aims. "Sorry for the inconvenience, we are fighting for the future of our home," read one protest banner at the airport. "I think paralysing the airport will be effective in forcing Carrie Lam to respond to us … it can further pressure Hong Kong's economy," said Dorothy Cheng, 17. The weeks of protests began as opposition to a now-suspended bill that would have allowed suspects to be extradited to mainland China, but have swelled into wider calls for democracy. Demonstrators say they are fighting the erosion of the "one country, two systems" arrangement that enshrined some autonomy for Hong Kong since China took it back from Britain in 1997. They want Ms Lam to resign. She says she will stay. "My responsibility goes beyond this particular range of protest," Ms Lam said on Tuesday, adding that violence had pushed the territory into a state of "panic and chaos". As she spoke, the benchmark Hang Seng index hit a seven-month low. It shed more than 2%, dragging down markets across Asia. Ms Lam did not respond to questions at a press briefing to clarify if she had the power to withdraw the extradition bill and satisfy a key demand made by the protesters, or if she needed Beijing's approval. Airport authorities had earlier suspended check-in operations. Crowds of protesters continued to swell in the evening. "Terminal operations at Hong Kong International Airport have been seriously disrupted as a result of the public assembly," the airport authority said. Some passengers challenged protesters over the delays as tempers began to fray, while the demonstrators, using a Chinese term of encouragement, chanted, "Hong Kong people – add oil!" Flag carrier Cathay Pacific said: "There is potential for further flight disruptions at short notice". The airline, whose British heritage makes it a symbol of Hong Kong's colonial past, is also in a political bind. China's civil aviation regulator demanded that the airline suspend staff who joined or backed the protests from flights in its airspace, pushing the carrier's shares past Monday's 10-year low. Other Chinese airlines have offered passengers wanting to avoid Hong Kong a free switch to nearby destinations, such as Guangzhou, Macau, Shenzhen or Zhuhai, with the disruption sending shares in Shenzhen Airport Co Ltd surging.



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US 'deeply concerned' by Chinese paramilitary on Hong Kong border

US 'deeply concerned' by Chinese paramilitary on Hong Kong borderThe United States expressed concerns Wednesday over Chinese security force movements on the border with Hong Kong and urged Beijing to honor the territory’s autonomy as pro-democracy protests continued. A day after President Donald Trump appeared to take a hands-off position on the protests, a State Department spokesperson voiced concerns about the “continued erosion” of Hong Kong’s autonomy and expressed “staunch” support for freedom of expression and peaceful assembly in the territory.



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