LONDON – Britain has summoned the Chinese ambassador after he said that relations between Beijing and London had been “damaged” by Britain’s backing of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong.
Ambassador Liu Xiaoming warned Britain not to interfere in what he called China’s “internal affairs.” Earlier, British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt offered his strong backing for the demonstrations in Hong Kong, which was a British territory until the handover of power to China in 1997.
“The UK signed an internationally binding legal agreement in 1984 that enshrines the ‘one country, two systems rule,’ enshrines the basic freedoms of the people of Hong Kong and we stand four square behind that agreement, four square behind the people of Hong Kong. And there will be serious consequences if that internationally binding legal agreement were not to be honored,” Hunt said Tuesday.
The United States and its allies have also voiced grave concern over the direction of Chinese rule in Hong Kong.
Pro-democracy supporters are urging Britain to do more, claiming it has a legal and moral duty to stand up for the freedom of Hong Kong’s people.
The Union Jack flag has been a prominent symbol amid weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong. Violent protests marked the 22nd anniversary of handover to Chinese rule Monday, as demonstrators stormed the parliament building.
Source: Voice of America