China won't give in to Hong Kong independence

China says it will not give in to Hong Kong's demands for full independence. (Reuters)

China says it will not give in to Hong Kong's demands for full independence. (Reuters)

Tens of thousands in the global financial hub have been vowing not to end their street blockades until Beijing authorities grant them fully democratic leadership elections.

China’s Communist Party leader Xi Jinping made no comment on the protests as he and other top party officials offered flower baskets in Tiananmen Square on the first “Martyrs’ Day”, a new holiday to celebrate China’s national heroes.

The commemoration came one day after Xi “appreciated a music concert” in Beijing Monday night, the party’s official People’s Daily newspaper reported.

Xi was shown smiling and clapping flanked by current Premier Li Keqiang and former President Jiang Zemin, who rose to power following a violent crackdown on 1989 pro-democracy protests in Beijing.

‘Extreme minority’
China has condemned the Hong Kong protests as “illegal”, but Hong Kong’s leadership has denied speculation that Beijing would send in the army to quash dissent.

The People’s Daily said in a commentary on its website the protesters were an “extreme minority” who have “destroyed the rule of law” in the city.

“This breach of the peace and extreme behaviour will ultimately lead to a breakdown in social order,” it added.

The state-run China Daily said that the protests were “taking a toll on local harmony and stability”.

The Global Times said the “tide will turn against the oppositionists” if Beijing stands firm.

“The central government will not step back just because of the chaos created by the oppositionists,” it said.

“Hong Kong people see it clearly that the central government [Beijing] will not change its mind, they will recognise the dramas staged by the oppositionists are just making things worse,” the paper added. – AFP


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