China’s Xi Warns Hong Kong Protesters Jeopardize ‘One Country, Two Systems’
China’s President Xi Jinping warned Thursday that protests in Hong Kong threaten the “one country, two systems” principle governing the semi-autonomous city that has tipped into worsening violence with two dead in a week.
Hong Kong has been ruled by a unique system guaranteeing greater freedoms than on the mainland since its handover from British rule to China in 1997.
But protests, which began against a now-shelved extradition bill to China, have spiralled into wider calls for democracy and police accountability as violence and demonstrations roil the city, challenging Beijing’s authority.
For a fourth straight day on Thursday, protesters caused widespread disruption with barricades and rallies, as the police drafted in reinforcements and the government denied rumours of an imminent curfew.
The five-month crisis has entered a new phase in recent days with hardcore protesters embarking on a campaign to “blossom everywhere” across the city in a bid to stretch police resources.
The protests, fuelled by fears that the territory’s China-backed government is encroaching on the city’s freedoms, are backlit by fears China may send in its troops to squash the movement.
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