China warns UK of ‘consequences’ over Hong Kong ‘interference’
The UK will “bear the consequences” if it continues to go “down the wrong road” on Hong Kong, China has warned.
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On Monday, the UK suspended its extradition treaty with Hong Kong over a new security law for the ex-colony, which gives Beijing more power.
In response, the Chinese ambassador in London said the UK had “blatantly interfered” in China’s affairs.
Liu Xiaoming said: “China has never interfered in UK’s internal affairs. The UK should do the same to China.”
Earlier this month, Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to offer three million Hong Kong residents the chance to settle in the UK, allowing them to ultimately apply for British citizenship.
The moves came after Beijing introduced the controversial new security law at the end of June, creating offences that could see Hong Kong residents sent to mainland China for trial.
Critics have claimed the law could see pro-democracy protesters in the region being served with life sentences.
Tensions between London and Beijing have been rising, with the UK government separately announcing it would require the removal of Chinese technology from the UK’s fledgling 5G mobile network.
Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in London on Monday evening ahead of talks with the PM on issues including China and the coronavirus pandemic.
According to its opponents, the new security legislation breaches an agreement made with the UK before Hong Kong – a former British colony – was handed over to China in 1997.
Under a 50-year agreement, China enshrined civil liberties – including the right to protest, freedom of speech and the independence of the judiciary – in Hong Kong’s Basic Law, an approach which came to be known as “one country, two systems”.
Source : Reuters | Photocredit : Google