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Hong Kong braces for violence on eve of National Day celebrations

by Ace Damon
Hong Kong braces for violence on eve of National Day celebrations

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Violence engulfed Hong Kong over the weekend after protesters clashed with police, causing further chaos in the countdown to China National Day. (September 30)
AP, AP

The People's Republic of China will mark the 70th anniversary of its founding on Tuesday, but the celebrations in Hong Kong will be drowned out. as the city prepares for protests it can become violent.

Police said they would deploy about 6,000 police officers in common protest areas. Police spokesman John Tse Chun-chung on Monday described violence in last weekend's protests as "a step closer to terrorism" – a term often used by the Beijing government to describe months of massive riots in China. streets.

"There are apparent signs that hard core violence will increase" on National Day, Tse said. He accused protest leaders of "inciting others, including those with a suicidal tendency, to commit extreme acts such as murdering the police, disguising themselves as officers to kill other people." and burning down. "

Lawmaker Claudia Mo dismissed police information as "Chinese propaganda at stake." She also robbed the police for infiltrating protests with undercover police, suggesting that they could be responsible for igniting the violence.

People form a human chain in support of the protest movement in Hong Kong's harbor area, Monday, September 30, 2019. (Photo: Felipe Dana, AP)

Historic National Day for China

National Day marks the anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, the last days of the Chinese Civil War. Chiang Kai-shek's government fled to Taiwan, leaving Mao Zedong's Chinese Communist Party to seize power in mainland China. The revered "President Mao" led the party and the country until his death in 1976.

Plans for National Day

In Beijing, a large military parade and fireworks will mark the day. In Hong Kong, a fireworks display and horse racing festival were canceled for safety reasons. City plans require a flag-raising ceremony at the city's convention center and an internal reception, but the public will be barred.

China's control of Hong Kong

Hong Kong was controlled by Britain for over 150 years until 1997, when it ceded control to China. The rich, free-market city has become a special administrative region that has promised a "high degree of autonomy" for 50 years.

Conflicts and protests

Hong Kong's pro-democracy residents have long accused China of slowly invading this autonomy. The issue sparked mass protests following a government proposal change extradition laws allow suspects in Hong Kong to be sent to mainland China for trial. The Hong Kong government withdrew the proposal, but protesters seized the moment to press for more freedoms and investigations into police behavior during the protests.

US position in protests

Congressional leaders blamed the Chinese government for the unrest and warned Beijing against using force to suppress the protests. President Donald Trump, waged in a trade war with China, has generally avoided criticizing Beijing for dealing with the unrest. Last month he described the situation as "difficult" and "complicated".

Contribution: Associated Press

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