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Op-Ed: US must stop intervening in Hong Kong

By Md Enamul Hassan (People's Daily Online)    18:51, December 06, 2019

As an inseparable part of the People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong has been witnessing tremendous economic growth for several decades. The steady development and stability of this special region of China has earned it the confidence of global entrepreneurs and investors. As a result, Hong Kong has been turned into one of the most important economic and trading hubs of the world. Though Hong Kong had always been in the news for new development sagas, unfortunately, it has now hit the global headlines for riots, violence and sabotage. The world has witnessed how valuable assets were burnt, and police were being assaulted every day. Ironically, this sabotage has happened under the pretext of peaceful demonstrations and under the auspices of so-called savior of democracy the United States.

The continuous actions taken by the US over the issue have proved that it has been using Hong Kong's opposition and some radical forces to serve their vested interests of destabilizing China, barring the steady progress of the second largest economy of the world. Though the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government has already responded to demands of the demonstrators, they have irrationally escalated violence and caused mayhem in Hong Kong. But over time, it’s been crystal clear that these violent activities are aimed to trample the rule of law, sabotage social order, undermine national sovereignty and the "one country, two systems" principle of China.

The targeted and planned sabotage activities of the rioters have proved their malicious intents. Because rioters have attacked Hong Kong police headquarters, disrupted government agencies and ransacked the Legislative Council building. They have blocked roads and assaulted police officers. They insulted national emblem and flag of China, clashed with police, with some attempting to rob officers of their guns. Members of radical protesters carried out illegal demonstrations in the central and western parts of Hong Kong Island, seriously hindering traffic. They dug up pavement bricks, destroyed street signs and lampposts, set fires on multiple roads and charged police lines. Violence again escalated as some rioters carried lethal weapons such as bows and arrows and petrol bombs.

Even after their demands are met, rioters used guerrilla tactics to stage strikes, blocked public transport, prevented residents from going to work, damaged public facilities, sieged police stations and attacked police officers across Hong Kong, pushing the city to the brink. Rioters have done everything under the pretext of exercising their rights of democratic movement which is guaranteed in "one country, two systems" principle. But they have jeopardized the very principle through violence, riots and sabotage.

On the contrary, during the grisly violent acts of rioters, the Hong Kong police force has shown their mastery and honored their duties. They enforced the law with professionalism and great restraint. The Hong Kong police have been a pillar in safeguarding Hong Kong's social security and the last shield to uphold its social stability. It has maintained its reputation as one of the world's most outstanding police forces. Apart from that, the central government of China has yet to intervene in the violence in Hong Kong, which is intolerable in any civilized, rational society under the rule of law. The central government has given the HKSAR government total freedom to tackle the situation. But the United States of America has been instigating this violence very brazenly.

Though they have no rights to meddling in internal affairs of any country of the world, the US enacted the so-called Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act (HKHRDA) of 2019 last month. This federal law requires the US government to impose sanctions against Chinese and Hong Kong officials responsible for human rights abuses in Hong Kong, and requires the United States Department of State and other agencies to conduct an annual review to determine whether changes in Hong Kong's political status (its relationship with the Chinese mainland) justify changing the unique, favorable trade relations between the US and Hong Kong. The bill was accompanied by a companion bill restricting US exports of crowd control devices to the Hong Kong police forces, which passed both chambers of Congress and signed by Trump on the same occasion.

Moreover, media reports suggested that the US has long been working to destabilize Hong Kong. Mint Press News, a US news website, reported that some groups involved in recent rioting in Hong Kong received significant funding from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), which it described as a CIA soft-power cutout. Sentaku, a Japanese monthly magazine, also revealed in August how the foreign forces represented by the US manipulate the Hong Kong chaos.

In response to the US actions, China strongly condemned the US interference in internal affairs of Hong Kong. It responded that the bill fully reveals the ill intentions of some people in the United States to mess up Hong Kong and contain China's development. The Hong Kong government also criticized the legislation, calling it "unnecessary and unwarranted" and an interference into the internal affairs of Hong Kong. China has also called upon the US to stop intervening in Hong Kong. The Chinese government recently retaliated against the US for the passage of the HKHRDA by suspending visits of US naval vessels and military aircraft to Hong Kong and by sanctioning several US-based NGOs whom the Chinese government accused of orchestrating the Hong Kong protests.

In my eyes, given the aforesaid points, all peace-loving people of the world would like echo the call of the Chinese government to the US for stopping their illegal interference in Hong Kong. As it’s an integral part of China, the crisis should be dealt with by itself. It’s a must for the sake of the people of Hong Kong who have made the city hub of global economy by hardworking and perseverance.

The writer is the diplomatic correspondent of the Daily Sun, a leading national English newspaper of Bangladesh. He is now based in Beijing. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Du Mingming, Bianji)

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