British Arrogance on Hong Kong

By Finian Cunningham

July 07, 2019 "Information Clearing House" -  Britain’s Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has warned China of “consequences” over its handling of violent protests in Hong Kong.

Hunt has not ruled out slapping sanctions on the Chinese government, according to BBC reporting.

Other Conservative politicians like former Tory party chairman Chris Patten have also weighed in to rebuke China and to praise the protesters. While these politicians say they "condemn all violence" it is nevertheless clear that they are giving at least tacit encouragement to civil unrest in Hong Kong.

For its part, China angrily hit back this week with a warning to Britain to "stop interfering" in its internal affairs.

The latest spat between the United Kingdom and China flared up after protesters trashed the parliament building in Hong Kong in scenes of rampant anarchy. Windows were smashed and walls graffitied as protesters ran amok throughout the legislative council building last Monday. Colonial-era British flags were strewn over the chamber.

Hong Kong has been China’s sovereign territory for the past 22 years after Britain returned its former colony to Beijing’s control from a negotiated deal implemented in 1997. That was after nearly 150 years of British colonial rule over the tiny enclave on China’s southeast coast.

Why Britain should ever had possession of Chinese territory is of course a moot point. The omission of that topic in British political discourse illustrates the innate arrogance that lies behind the latest war of words with Bejing.

The fact is that Hong Kong is now under Beijing’s sovereign control, albeit with a degree of local autonomy as per the terms of the handover accord negotiated with London. The so-called “one country, two systems” arrangement expires in the coming years when Hong Kong will became fully integrated under Chinese laws with the rest of mainland China. Presently, however, it is still officially Chinese sovereign territory.


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