U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday he believed Chinese President Xi Jinping has acted “very responsibly” with the protests in Hong Kong over an extradition bill that could see people from the territory sent to China for trial, Reuters has reported.
“We’re working on trade deals right now. We’ll see what happens,” Trump told reporters at the White House before an unrelated meeting with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Hong Kong has been hit by a series of sometimes violent protests for over two months – its most serious crisis since the city was handed back to China by Britain in 1997 but with democratic freedoms under a “one country, two systems” formula.
“I know that that’s a very important situation for President Xi,” Trump said, adding that “China could stop them if they wanted.”
“I think that President Xi of China has acted responsibly, very responsibly.” Trump told reporters. “I hope that President Xi will do the right thing.”
Chief Executive Carrie Lam, saddened with her failure to handle the Hong Kong crisis, led her whole team of the government to meet the media on Monday to call the attacks at Yuen Long “shocking” and said she had told police commissioner Stephen Lo to pursue the culprits. She also condemned the defacing of China’s liaison office.
Sunday night, hundreds of masked assailants dressed in white have assaulted residents, protesters, journalists and a lawmaker in Yuen Long, hours after an anti-extradition law march ended, Hong Kong Free Press has reported.
At least 36 people were hurt in the fracas, with one in critical condition and four seriously injured, Radio Television Hong Kong reported.
The incident took place on Sunday night, hours after an anti-extradition march ended on Hong Kong Island; Police have made no arrests.
“This is possibly the most horrific footage of the brutal Triad attacks in Yuen Long, showing an isolated passer-by being beaten viciously by twenty or more thugs. To think these people can operate with virtual impunity. Tell me again about how strong the rule of law is in HK,” Jack Hazlewood wrote in twitter, showing a video of the Triad thugs dressed in white casually strolling past a load of police vans.
Noted hedge fund manager and anti-CCP activist Kyle Bass followed with a twitter message, “Chinese thugs beat HKers in gang-style attacks. The good people of HK should leave before the murderous regime of xi jinping takes over for good. We expect more brutal beatings and murders ordered by Beijing in the future. Any sense of hope or democracy has now been extinguished.”
UK Foreign Secretary Jemery Hunt condemns the violence, saying on Monday, “45 protesters were reportedly injured, one critically. We were all shocked to have seen such unacceptable scene of violence. There’s been a great deal of speculation about the identity of the group who attacked people at Yuen Long metro station, but it is important that we do not jump into any conclusion on their identity until a thorough investigation has taken place.”
As the protest in Hong Kong entered its sixth week, the spotlight turned to the suburban Yuen Long District that’s closer to Shenzhen along the mainland Chinese border than the city’s central area.
Demonstrators converged on Sai Wan’s China Liaison Office in Hong Kong on Sunday night and Central Hong Kong once again becomes battleground as riot police clash with protesters.
Protesters threw eggs and ink-filled balloons, obscured CCTV cameras with spray paint and covered parts of the building’s exterior with anti-government graffiti.
Organisers of Sunday’s protest, the Civil Human Rights Front, said 430,000 people participated. Police said 138,000 joined at its peak.
Edited by staff