Left Menu
Development News Edition

Trump angers China by signing bill supporting pro-democracy Hong Kong protesters

PTI | Washington DC | Updated: 28-11-2019 20:40 IST | Created: 28-11-2019 20:34 IST
Trump angers China by signing bill supporting pro-democracy Hong Kong protesters
US President Donald Trump Image Credit: ANI

President Donald Trump has signed a law supporting pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong, drawing a furious reaction from Beijing, which on Thursday summoned the US envoy to China and warned of "firm countermeasures". The legislation was approved unanimously by the US Senate and by all but one lawmaker in the House of Representatives last week.

Trump signed the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019 into law on Wednesday. The law would require the State Department to certify once a year that Hong Kong is sufficiently autonomous to retain its special US trading consideration - a status that helps its economy.

It also threatens sanctions on Chinese and Hong Kong officials deemed responsible for human rights abuses in Hong Kong, escalating tensions between China and the US. Hong Kong is a semi-autonomous territory which operates under the 'one country, two systems' principle - a structure that grants the city's citizens some degree of financial and legal independence from the mainland.

The city has been shaken by massive, sometimes violent, protests initially organized to oppose a now-suspended bill that would have allowed extraditions to mainland China. These protests have now turned into a wider movement for democratic reforms. Trump in a statement said, "I signed these bills out of respect for President Xi (Jinping), China, and the people of Hong Kong."

"They are being enacted in the hope that leaders and representatives of China and Hong Kong will be able to amicably settle their differences leading to long term peace and prosperity for all," Trump said. Reacting to Trump's move, a livid Beijing summoned the US envoy to China and asked Washington to refrain from putting the law into effect to "avoid further damage" to bilateral ties.

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng summoned US Ambassador to China Terry Branstad to lodge a strong protest against the US move. "China strongly urges the US to correct its mistake and make a fresh start, not to put the Act into effect, and immediately stop meddling in Hong Kong affairs or interfering in China's internal affairs so as to avoid causing further damage to bilateral ties and cooperation in important areas between China and the United States," Le told Branstad.

Le said China will take "countermeasures" in response to the "wrong move" taken by the US and America must bear all the consequences that may ensue, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported. Hong Kong is part of China and its affairs are China's internal affairs, brooking no interference from any foreign government or force, Le said.

The Chinese government has unswerving determination to defend national sovereignty, security and development interests, implement "one country, two systems" principle and oppose any external force in interfering in Hong Kong affairs, he stressed. Earlier, the Chinese Foreign Ministry in a statement said: "This is a severe interference in Hong Kong's affairs, which are China's internal affairs".

"It is also in serious violation of international law and basic norms governing international relations. The Chinese government and people firmly oppose such stark hegemonic acts. The nature of this is extremely abominable, and harbors absolutely sinister intentions," it said. The legislation came at a time when China and the US have reached an advanced stage of negotiations to sign phase one agreement to end a trade war between the world's two largest economies.

"We urge the US not to continue going down the wrong path, or China will take countermeasures, and the US must bear all consequences," the Chinese statement said. Until 1997, Hong Kong was ruled by Britain as a colony but then returned to China.

Under the "one country, two systems" arrangement, it has more autonomy than the mainland. It has its own judiciary and a separate legal system from mainland China. "We are determined in implementing the 'one country, two systems' principle and safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests." the Chinese statement said.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Rethinking Rural Livelihoods in the Times of COVID-19

The reverse migration caused by COVID 19 pandemic has put an additional burden of about one crore people on Indian villages particularly in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Bengal and Odisha. Besides increasing the risk of spreading the ...

‘Discounted Deaths’ and COVID 19: Anthropology of Death and Emotions

Death is a social event rather than the mere cessation of biological functions. As seen by anthropologists, death is not just physical but intensely social, cultural, and political....

Indigenous knowledge of communities a must for maximizing impact of community work

Generally, it has been observed that the majority of the academicians in higher education institutions neglect the wisdom of community people and throw their weight around thinking that they know everything and the community knows nothing. ...

In rebuking FBR, Pakistan’s courts take a stand for public health

The system, if implemented effectively, will allow Pakistans revenue service to combat the illicit trade in tobacco products and potentially add hundreds of millions of dollars to the states budget each year. ...

Videos

Latest News

Broncos TE Butt ready to move on from injury woes

Jake Butt hasnt seen much of the field during three seasons with the Denver Broncos due to knee injuries. Butt, who turns 25 in July, is hoping things will be different in 2020. He has proclaimed that his left knee is 100 percent and is tha...

Railway Board Chairman writes to Maharashtra Chief Secy over running of special trains from June 1

Railway Board Chairman VK Yadav wrote to Maharashtra Chief Secretary Ajoy Mehta, requesting him to issue necessary instructions to the district administration to organise the compliance to the guidelines of Ministry of Home Affairs MHA and ...

Armed bandits kill at least 18 in Nigeria's Katsina state

Armed bandits in Nigerias northwestern state of Katsina killed at least 18 people, including a local official, and stole thousands of livestock on Sunday, two witnesses and a police spokesman told Reuters. The eyewitnesses said as many as 5...

US to designate Antifa as terrorist organization: Trump

Washington DC USA, June 1 SputnikANI The United States will be designating the far-left anti-fascist movement Antifa as a terrorist organization, President Donald Trump said on Sunday. The decision was made amid mass protests sweeping acros...

Give Feedback