On June 12th, massive demonstrations took place in Hong Kong with protesters blocking key roads and government buildings and police responding to riots with tear gas and rubber bullets at them.
The protest was formally prompted by a decision of the Legislative Council (LegCo) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) to discuss and possibly implement amendments to the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Ordinance. But it is also aimed at preventing further integration of Hong Kong into mainland China.
The bill that would introduce amendments aims to fill loopholes in HKSAR’s existing legal framework concerning mutual legal assistance in criminal matters. It is basically a bill that would allow criminal refugees to be extradited from Hong Kong to mainland China, since currently there is no such scenario.
HKSAR Chief Executive Carrie Lam strongly condemned the violence and called for peaceful expression of different views.
The meeting of LegCo was postponed, but it will only be held at a different date.
Describing what happened as a “sad scene,” Lam called the protest a “riot” and condemned it in a videotaped speech.
“The riots which undermined social peace and disregarded laws and regulations cannot be tolerated by any civilized, law-based society. It is very clear that this is no longer a peaceful assembly, but a blatant and organized riot,” Lam said.
“Hong Kong is a free, open and diverse society where people have different views on anything. But there is a bottom line for expressing opinions. If radical and violent means can be used to achieve the goal, these scenes will only become more and more fierce and will certainly bring harm to Hong Kong,” she said.
“I appeal to all the people who love Hong Kong to stay away from violence,” she said, adding that “I am convinced that Hong Kong, a civilized society, can solve any problem in a peaceful, rational and law-abiding manner for the sake of Hong Kong’s overall interests.”
HKSAR government’s Commissioner of Police Stephen Lo said at a briefing in the afternoon that the police has been exercising restraint, but the protesters repeatedly charged the police cordon line, performing life-threatening acts including using sharpened iron poles and bricks to attack police officers.
“Police will take resolute actions to restore social order and protect public safety,” said the statement.
Expectedly, Western ‘democracies’ and NGOs support the protests and claim that they were “peaceful,” while the police are the guilty party and are called brutal.
Amnesty International said that the police’s use of force against protesters in Hong Kong is “a violation of international law,” adding that officers have “taken advantage of the violent acts of a small minority as a pretext to use excessive force against the vast majority.”
“The ugly scenes of police using tear gas and pepper spray against overwhelmingly peaceful protesters is a violation of international law. Police have a duty to maintain public order, but in doing so they may use force only when strictly necessary. Hong Kong’s police have today failed to live up to this standard,” Man-Kei Tam, Director of Amnesty International Hong Kong, said in a statement.
“The police have taken advantage of the violent acts of a small minority as a pretext to use excessive force against the vast majority of peaceful protesters.
Tear gas and projectiles like rubber bullets are notoriously inaccurate and indiscriminate and can result in serious injury and even death. They should only ever be used in a targeted response to specific acts of violence and never to disperse peaceful protesters.
This excessive response from police is fueling tensions and is likely to contribute to worsening violence, rather than end it. We urge the Hong Kong police not to repeat such abuses against peaceful protesters, and instead ensure people can legitimately exercise their rights. We also remind police that using force against protesters already brought under control is unlawful.”
US President Donald Trump himself said that he was impressed by the biggest protest he had ever seen.
“I looked today and that really is a million people. A lot of times people talk about, they had 2,000 people but it was really 1,000 or it was 200. I see it all the time … but when you look at this demonstration, they said it was a million people. That was a million people,” he said, remaining largely impartial, saying: “That was as big a demonstration as I’ve ever seen, so I hope it all works out for China and for Hong Kong.”
The protests against the bill, and the larger integration are opposed mostly by:
- Wester-funded civil rights activists, who claim that anybody in Hong Kong was under threat of simply being “grabbed” by the Chinese authorities due to political reasons;
- More than 100 companies said that they would shut down to protest the bill. Trade unions suggested they might join in;
- The Hong Kong Journalists Association said in a statement that the amendment would “not only threaten the safety of journalists but also have a chilling effect on the freedom of expression in Hong Kong”;
- Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu tweeted in support of the anti-extradition protests: “I stand shoulder to shoulder with the hundreds of thousands in #HongKong fighting the extradition bill & for rule of law. Please know you are not alone. #Taiwan is with you! The will of the people will prevail!”
- Representatives from the European Union have met with Hong Long leaders and expressed concern over the bill. Members of the US Congressional-Executive Commission on China have also spoken out against the bill, warning it could “negatively impact the relationship between the United States and Hong Kong.”
And according to MSM, only Hong Kong’s leadership, and mainly Carrie Lam are supporting the bill, together with the Chinese Foreign Ministry.
It is quite apparent, though, the exact same formula is being followed here: the protesters are always peaceful and good, the police and authorities – brutal. Propaganda in MSM is on point, with claims of excessive violence that was actually completely unwarranted by any actions by the demonstrators.
The examples are numerous, in many post-Soviet countries and around the world: from Ukraine to Venezuela.
“The bad guys” are always the side that the Washington-led establishment is dissatisfied with.
Propaganda against the Chinese government is also currently on-going, with posts coming from anonymous Chinese citizens, who permanently reside in the US, the EU, Canada constantly express their opinion of Chinese President Xi Jinping not being their president and so on.
The Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China released a warning to all applicants who wish to continue their studies in the United States, claiming that they may be exposed to unreasonable risks and are more likely to be under observation. They can be deported at any time.
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