No End In Sight To Hong Kong’s Violent Protests

THE VIOLENCE IN Hong Kong has reached a new level. There have now been two deaths with two others critically injured. The protests have moved from weekends to weekdays with traffic in the city centre being brought to a halt for the fifth successive day by protesting office workers, an attempt to stretch the resources of police attempting to storm university campuses, the protesting students’ strongholds but previously considered sanctuaries.

President Xi Jinping has issued his most severe warning to date, saying the protestors were putting ‘one country, two systems’ at risk. One of the city’s top cops said Hong Kong was on the brink of breakdown, and the ever nationalist Global Times warned of direct military intervention by Beijing.

In London, Teresa Cheng, Hong Kong’s justice secretary, was set upon in the street on her way to an event promoting inward investment to the city, providing a further opportunity for Beijing to blame foreign influences for the protests.

It is looking increasingly difficult to see where this ends. To many in Hong Kong, the government remains intransigent, and police brutality is seen as the reason the protests have become more violent. For its part, Beijing has yet to give any indication that it is willing to even open discussion with the demonstrators over their five key demands. To the contrary, Xi has told the authorities there to clamp down on national security. More than 4,000 protesters already have been arrested.

In other times, putting the city under de facto martial law would have seemed to be the logical conclusion. However, with financial markets already nervous and how the mercurial Trump administration might use such a move in its trade negotiations with Beijing a further wildcard, these are not standard times.


Filed under Hong Kong

4 responses to “No End In Sight To Hong Kong’s Violent Protests

  1. Pingback: US Congress Support For Hong Kong Still Needs Trump’s Approval | China Bystander

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