KONFRONTASI - Beijing has warned the United States against any meddling in Hong Kong where pro-democracy protesters continue their rallies, saying China will not tolerate illegal acts in its territory.
“The Chinese government has very firmly and clearly stated its position. Hong Kong affairs are China’s internal affairs,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told his American counterpart John Kerry in Washington on Wednesday.
“All countries should respect China’s sovereignty and this is a basic principle of governing international relations,” Wang said.
“I believe for any country, for any society, no one would allow those illegal acts that violate public order. That’s the situation in the United States and that’s the same situation in Hong Kong,” he added.
The United States has stepped up its interference in China’s internal affairs, with Kerry saying that Washing supports universal suffrage in Hong Kong.
“As China knows, we support universal suffrage in Hong Kong, accordant with the Basic Law,” Kerry told reporters, standing alongside Wang.
“We believe an open society with the highest possible degree of autonomy and governed by rule of law is essential for Hong Kong’s stability and prosperity,” Kerry added.
Tension is on the rise in Hong Kong. Anti-election law protesters angry at China's plan to vet candidates for 2017 polls have vowed to step up protests if Chief Executive CY Leung does not quit.
They've even threatened to occupy government buildings if Leung does not resign by Thursday night.
“We hope that by tonight or tomorrow Leung resign, otherwise we will announce an escalation of our movement including occupying or surrounding different government buildings,” said Lester Shum, the deputy secretary general of the Hong Kong Federation of Students.
The unrest was triggered after China refused to allow open nominations for the city’s next chief executive in 2017, forcing the voters to choose from a list of two or three candidates selected by a nominating committee.
Activists insisted that the region’s citizens must be able to elect the chief executive. They believe the decision raises fears that candidates will be screened for loyalty to Beijing.
China has said it will introduce universal suffrage for the city’s 2017 election, but wants a committee to approve the candidates.
Hong Kong is a special administrative region of China. The financial hub has enjoyed substantial political autonomy since 1997, when its leadership returned to China after about a century of British colonial rule.[presstv]