Chinese propaganda outlets said Hong Kong protesters are “asking for self-destruction,” AFP reported Tuesday.
Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the state-run tabloid Global Times, said on the social media website Weibo that the presence of Chinese military at the Shenzhen-Hong Kong border was a warning to protesters in Hong Kong that China can and will intervene if the situation does not improve, AFP reported.
Hu’s comments come as thousands of protesters hold their second day of an organized sit-in at Hong Kong International Airport that began Monday in response to reports of a brutal police force being used against citizens during protests that took place across the region Sunday.
Our correspondent @RamsaySky says protesters and press are being hit on the head as police move into Hong Kong airport.
— Sky News (@SkyNews) August 13, 2019(Article Continues Below Advertisement)
“If the violent elements in Hong Kong do not understand this principle and fail to see the signal of the gathering of armed police in Shenzhen, their actions will be self-destructive,” Hu said.
“If they do not pull back from the cliff and continue to push the situation further beyond the critical point, the power of the state may come to Hong Kong at any time,” he added.
Hu also tweeted a video by the state-run Global Times showing Chinese military heading toward the Shenzhen border.
“Videos of China’s armed police being assembling in Shenzhen, a city bordering Hong Kong, are circulated online today. I think it is a clear warning to rioters in Hong Kong. Possibility of Beijing intervening in Hong Kong’s situation is rising,” he wrote.
Videos of China's armed police being assembling in Shenzhen, a city bordering Hong Kong, are circulated online today. I think it is a clear warning to rioters in Hong Kong. Possibility of Beijing intervening in Hong Kong's situation is rising. https://t.co/utJssSEJUQ
— Hu Xijin 胡锡进 (@HuXijin_GT) August 12, 2019
The airport protest on Monday and Tuesday caused Hong Kong International — one of the world’s busiest airports — to cancel nearly all of its flights Monday afternoon and on Tuesday, forcing masses of people from all over to change their travel plans, The New York Times reported.
China’s state broadcaster, CCTV, called protests in Hong Kong “signs of terrorism” on Monday in an alert to viewers.
“Alert! There are signs of terrorism on the streets of Hong Kong. … No country can accept terrorist acts in its own country,” CCTV’s message read, according to The Washington Post.
Anti-government protests in Hong Kong have been going on for nearly three months in retaliation of Beijing’s “Fugitive Offenders and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Legislation (Amendment) Bill 2019,” which could extradite Hong Kong residents convicted of certain crimes to China.
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