The Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) garrison in Hong Kong released a video showing a military drill, on July 31st, on its official Weibo account.
MSM claims that this is a “thinly veiled” warning towards the “pro-democracy” movement in Hong Kong. It is yet unclear which movement MSM refer to, since none of the protests so far have called for democracy in the slightest.
It is also unclear why it is called “thinly veiled,” as it is quite an apparent warning against any further escalations, such as defacing the Legislative Council building, or the Chinese Representative’s Office.
The three-minute video showcases the PLA’s tanks, helicopter gunfire, rocket launchers and other military hardware in action in Hong Kong, as well as heavily armed troops performing an anti-terrorism drill. It’s quite professionally made.
It also features an “anti-riot” drill in which armed soldiers, armored personnel carriers and water cannons are used to disperse a crowd of protesters.
Thus, “thinly veiled” is quite a dull classification.
At the beginning of the drill, a soldier, speaking Cantonese (which is spoken in HK, rather than Mainland China’s Mandarin) yells into a loudspeaker:
“All consequences are at your own risk.”
Finally, the video concludes with an affirmation, that HK is part of China.
“We are … confident and capable of firmly maintaining national sovereignty, safety, development interests and maintaining Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability in the long run,” it said.
When asked about the video, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a regular briefing:
“We believe that the Hong Kong garrison of the People’s Liberation Army will continue to become a stabilizing pillar for Hong Kong’s long-term prosperity and stability.”
On July 31st, Hua Chunying answered a question about a rumor of Chinese troops position at the “border” between China and Hong Kong. And that the White House considered it risky and that China shouldn’t “over-intervene” in an issue within its own territory.
The US Department of State said that Chunying’s accusations on the previous day were “ludicrous.” She said that that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had forgotten himself and that he wasn’t the CIA director anymore, and that the protests were to a large degree fueled by specific actors from the US and the EU.
“On your first question, I’m not aware of what you said. If the White House truly hopes for peace, stability and prosperity in Hong Kong, they should advise those violent protesters and radicals to express their demands in a peaceful rather than violent way.
On your second question, do you find that ludicrous? I don’t think it ludicrous at all. Judging from many recent media reports including those I mentioned yesterday, any unbiased person who doesn’t selectively turn a blind eye to the facts can see the truth clearly and make fair judgments. The US indeed owes the world an honest and candid explanation. Of course, if it can prove and promise that it has not interfered in Hong Kong affairs and will not do so in the future, we most certainly welcome that.
There’s something more I want to say. As journalists, you may have your own perspectives. But all people, including journalists and officials, should tell right from wrong and have a fair judgment on whether those incidents are peaceful protests or radical, violent behaviors. Am I right? Taking this opportunity, I’d like to say this to our friends from the press. When you report the recent developments in Hong Kong, besides taking pictures of the police, please do turn your lens to those radical and violent activities, too. By doing so you will provide the world with more objective and comprehensive scenes, based on which people will draw impartial, fair and fact-based conclusions.
I believe the 1.4 billion Chinese people, including over seven million Hong Kong residents, all hope for peace, stability and prosperity in Hong Kong. What recently happened in Hong Kong saddens Hong Kong-lovers and gladdens its haters. I believe all those truly love Hong Kong and China and all those with a sense of justice have realized that.”
On August 1st, protests in Hong Kong continued, with more arrests of protesters accused of “rioting.”
The police said seven men and one woman, between the ages of 24 and 31 were arrested. They included Andy Chan, founder of the Hong Kong National party – it was banned in 2018.
In a separate operation a family of three was detained on suspicion of possessing explosives, after police raided an apartment and seized partially made smoke bombs.
The arrests come after 44 detained protesters were charged with rioting, a crime that carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison.
Despite the claims by US State Department and co., US President Donald Trump actually abstained from critics and said that it was China’s business, since HK was part of the country.
“Somebody said that at some point they’re going to want to stop that,” Trump told reporters. “But that’s between Hong Kong and that’s between China, because Hong Kong is a part of China.”
He called the protests “riots,” which is in line with what Beijing and the HK authorities call them, not what his administration calls them.
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