China Wants to Crackdown on Hong Kong
Beijing wants action soon on two issues that face great local opposition and could spur new protests.
Beijing wants action soon on two issues that face great local opposition and could spur new protests. One is the introduction of “patriotic” education in schools, designed to teach students to “love” the Chinese Communist Party and the teachings of Xi Jinping. The other is passage of a long-delayed law against “sedition” that pro-democrats fear would greatly curtail civil liberties permitted under current law. Past efforts to do so have sent protesters into the streets; in the current political atmosphere, the opposition could be even stronger.
China could respond with an even heavier hand. Beijing’s local office promises that it won’t interfere “in general” in Hong Kong affairs, but claims the right to “rectify” situations when it considers the national interest to be at stake. Whatever happens, Hong Kong’s prospects for a more democratic system of self-rule is not optimistic.
Robert Keatley is a former editor of The Asian Wall Street Journal and the South China Morning Post, both of Hong Kong.