See More on Facebook

Diplomacy, Politics

Beijing slams unrest and backs HK govt’s use of lawful means to tackle it

Protests have shut down Hong Kong for the past several days before a government crackdown.


Written by

Updated: June 14, 2019

Beijing yesterday condemned the unrest that broke out in Hong Kong over the city’s extradition Bill as an organised riot, and said it supported the local government’s use of lawful means to resolve the situation.

Asked if the central government supported the use of rubber bullets and tear gas on protesters on Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that mainstream public opinion in Hong Kong was against any act that undermines the city’s prosperity and stability.

“Any civilised and lawful society will not tolerate the destruction of peace and tranquillity,” he said.

“The Chinese central government strongly condemns all types of violence and supports the Hong Kong government to handle the matter according to the law.”

Chinese state media has blamed Hong Kong’s opposition camp and foreign elements for inciting lawlessness and exploiting the issue for their own benefit.

The English-language China Daily said the extradition Bill satisfied international conventions, but “the opposition camp and its foreign masters seem willing to oppose it for their own purposes at the expense of the city’s rule of law, public safety and justice”.

The nationalistic Global Times echoed this in multiple editorials yesterday that blamed the protests on “radical opposition forces (and) the Western forces behind them”.

“Radical opposition groups in Hong Kong are colluding with hostile forces out of their own political motivations,” it said. “Hong Kong residents should avoid being cheated, misled and exploited by them.”

Discussions of the protests on Chinese social media such as the Twitter-like Weibo service remained tightly controlled, limited mainly to state media carrying the Foreign Ministry statement.

The few exceptions were posts put up by pro-Beijing accounts, including one that claimed it had proof of Central Intelligence Agency “black hands” masquerading as foreign journalists among the protesters, and another that showed a man shouting at pro-democracy legislator Tanya Chan about being brainwashed.

Chinese netizens appeared to be largely aligned with Beijing’s narrative, with many rueing the paralysis wrought by the mass protests. “I hope that the people of Hong Kong will become more rational and not be manipulated by foreign forces,” said a netizen surnamed Kang.

However, there is also a strong sentiment that Hong Kongers are ungrateful or that they feel they deserve special treatment.

“How come they can sign (extradition agreements) with the whole world but not the mainland?” asked one netizen surnamed Gu.

“Hong Kong has returned to China; this is just like a child crying and refusing to be disciplined,” said another commentator, Yu Xiang. “He just needs to be spanked.”

A four-minute video posted by Global Times editor Hu Xijin, analysing the root cause of the protest, was widely shared, garnering more than 5,000 likes, shares and comments.

Mr Hu said political confrontations are a “game used to achieve balance” in Western societies, but have no place in non-Western societies where they erode social governance and the societal compact.

There were few dissenting comments, but some observers noted that Mr Hu appeared to be one of the few personalities allowed to speak at length about the Hong Kong situation.

“What has happened? Even Old Hu has been mobilised,” said Weibo user Youda Fanshu, using a nickname for Mr Hu.



Enjoyed this story? Share it.


About the Author: The Straits Times is Singapore's top-selling newspaper.

Eastern Briefings

All you need to know about Asia


Our Eastern Briefings Newsletter presents curated stories from 22 Asian newspapers from South, Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Sign up and stay updated with the latest news.



By providing us with your email address, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

View Today's Newsletter Here

Diplomacy, Politics

South Korea outpaces China with 505 new virus cases

The death toll now stands at 13, while 26 patients have been discharged after recovering fully. South Korea has reported its largest daily spike of 505 new coronavirus infections, outnumbering China for the first time as the government restricted exports of face masks amid a supply shortage. China, where the central city of Wuhan is the epicentre of the country’s outbreak, recorded 450 new cases yesterday. This brings South Korea’s total tally to 1,766, as officials warn that the number will continue to grow until around March 20 – two months after its first case. Experts say South Korea’s numbers are spiking because the authorities are testing people by the thousands each day, with the aim of testing all 210,000 members o


By The Straits Times
February 28, 2020

Diplomacy, Politics

China’s coronavirus fight remains challenging

 Key Party meeting calls for full vigilance in control, prevention tasks to avoid risks. The novel coronavirus epidemic in Hubei province is still complicated and challenging, a key Party meeting concluded on Wednesday as it drew attention to the risks of the epidemic rebounding in other areas. Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, presided over the meeting of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee in which members listened to a report by the leading group of the CPC Central Committee on coping with the epidemic outbreak and discussed key related tasks. At the meeting, Xi and other members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee donate


By China Daily
February 27, 2020

Diplomacy, Politics

UN chief hails China’s efforts to contain outbreak

Official urges all countries to ‘do everything to be prepared’ to contain the epidemic. United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday praised China’s contribution to the global fight against the novel coronavirus pneumonia outbreak, noting that the Chinese people are making efforts for all of humanity. The UN chief expressed his gratitude to all of the people in China who are sacrificing many aspects of their normal lives to prevent the virus from further spreading, after discussing the outbreak with World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in Geneva. Guterres said the decline in the number of new cases in China since the beginning of February is a very good sign, and he expressed the hope that this trend


By China Daily
February 26, 2020

Diplomacy, Politics

WHO calls China’s anti-virus effort ‘aggressive, agile’

Control measures taken by the country offered experience in improving the global response to the disease. While the substantial recent slowdown in the spread of novel coronavirus in China is real, and it is now reasonable to restore work activities step by step, health experts warned that risks abound of the virus flaring up again and they cautioned against complacency, the WHO-China Joint Mission on COVID-19 said at a news conference after its one-week field investigations in China. “Ambitious, agile and aggressive” control measures taken by China to control the novel coronavirus pneumonia epidemic, bolstered by nationwide solidarity and advanced scientific research, have altered the curve of the outbreak for the better, averted a large number of potentia


By China Daily
February 25, 2020

Diplomacy, Politics

Map shows latest tally of Covid-19 cases in Taiwan, Taipei tops list

 After Taiwan reported its first confirmed cases, health authorities finally released on Monday the latest tally of Covid-19 cases in each administrative region, with Taipei being the highest.  More than one month after Taiwan reported its first confirmed cases, health authorities finally released on Monday the latest tally of COVID-19 cases in each administrative region, with Taipei being the highest. An interactive map on the website of Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (CDC) shows the cities and counties where the country’s 28 coronavirus patients currently reside. Marked in red, the capital city has listed sev


By Asia News Network
February 24, 2020

Diplomacy, Politics

Asean, China enhance cooperation in response to Covid-19

The Asean Coordinating Council (ACC) and the Asean-China Foreign Ministers met on Thursday in Laos to discuss to how to respond to the coronavirus disease (Covid-19). The ACC’s special meeting, initiated by Vietnam as Chair of ASEAN, was attended by the Foreign Ministers of ASEAN member countries and the ASEAN Secretary-General. Chairing the meeting, Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh said the event aimed to implement the ASEAN Chair’s Statement released on February 14 on the bloc’s collective response to COVID-19. Minh said that in the face of the epidemic, ASEAN needed to promote its cohesive and responsive spirit, and intensify co-operation within the bloc and between the bloc and its partners to respond to ch


By Viet Nam News
February 21, 2020