Daily Management Review

Paralyzed Hong Kong: Protests don't fade


Protests in Hong Kong continue, and their intensity is not going to subside. In Beijing, fears are growing that the riots may spread to other explosive locations in the country - Tibet and Xinjiang.

Studio Incendo
Studio Incendo
Protests have been shaking Hong Kong since the spring of 2019. Despite the fact that by now the local police has already detained 2,300 people aged 13 to 83, “there is no end to the fierce confrontation,” says CNN.

The riots were ignited by the city government’s attempt to pass a law on the extradition of Hong Kong citizens who committed crimes to China. Despite the fact that the Hong Kong authorities made concessions to the protesters, intensity of the protests has not decreased, and the confrontation itself became a routine.

The demonstrations were peaceful at first, but by the summer actions of the activists had become more radical, and the police had to use weapons to disperse the demonstrators.

Given that the protesters are wearing masks that hide their faces, Head of the Hong Kong administration, Carrie Lam, announced a ban on the use of masks during demonstrations.

Lam, who personifies power, is the main target of protesters. The politician is in a very difficult situation: she herself used to participate in such actions, but now she admits that it is very difficult to satisfy many requirements. Most protesters have already forgotten about the initial ideas of the actions and take to the streets with the slogans “Hong Kong is not China” and “Freedom to Hong Kong!”

Mass demonstrations inflict tremendous damage on Hong Kong, China's largest world financial center. According to the South China Morning Post, over the past six days, Hong Kong has lost nearly $ 360 million. In addition, only over the weekend and Monday, the retail sector, the transportation sector, the restaurant and hotel business suffered losses of $ 242 million.

Losses of MTR Corporation, the Hong Kong metro operator, could amount to about $ 63.7 million in just two days of protests. Last Saturday, after the acts of vandalism that the demonstrators committed, the subway was completely restored, but the trains ran in a limited mode. Passengers received only half of the stations. Many shopping centers, shops and restaurants in the city never started working. 

Rich people are fleeing from the Hong Kong riot. According to Bloomberg, several millionaires from Hong Kong immediately expressed their intention to move to Ireland. Over the past eight weeks, about 100 people have tried to obtain a residence permit in this country under the program of assistance to immigrants, operating for wealthy Asians.

Beijing is seriously concerned about the situation in Hong Kong, but so far has not decided to use military force. At the same time, the Chinese authorities blame the West for the escalation of protests.

In early September, Yang Guang, the official spokesman for the Hong Kong and Macao State Council Affairs Office of the PRC, said that Western politicians who criticize police actions want to "create a problem for China."

Beijing initially tried to negotiate with the protesters, making it clear that it would not insist on an extradition law, then tried to demonstrate the possible use of force.

Leaks appeared in the Chinese press that armored vehicles were about to enter Hong Kong, and the Chinese police were preparing to disperse the demonstrators, but this intimidation did not bring any results.

The main fear of China is that the protests could spread to other potentially explosive points - Tibet and the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, where the ethnic minority Uyghurs live. Currently, preventive measures are being taken in both regions, and traffic on social networks is being monitored. 

source: cnn.com, scmp.com