Xi urges HK chief to up­hold na­tional unity

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

BEI­JING: Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping has called on Hong Kong chief ex­ec­u­tive Le­ung Chun-ying to up­hold na­tional unity and main­tain so­cial and po­lit­i­cal sta­bil­ity, state news agency Xin­hua said yes­ter­day.

A meet­ing of the two po­lit­i­cal lead­ers on the side­lines of the Apec sum­mit in the Peru­vian cap­i­tal Lima comes amid deep­en­ing con­cerns in Bei­jing over a fledg­ling independence move­ment in Hong Kong and re­cent street protests in the city.

Xi said he hopes Le­ung “res­o­lutely up­holds na­tional unity and main­tains so­cial and po­lit­i­cal sta­bil­ity”, said Xin­hua, adding Xi of­fered Le­ung and his gov­ern­ment full sup­port.

His re­marks echoed com­ments the Chi­nese pres­i­dent made in Bei­jing last week when he said China will never al­low any part of its ter­ri­tory to break off.

“Very sim­ply put and very force­fully, the pres­i­dent said there is no room what­so­ever for Hong Kong independence un­der the ‘one coun­try, two sys­tems’ ar­range­ment,” Le­ung told re­porters, adding they did not dis­cuss the is­sue in length dur­ing the meet­ing that lasted 45 min­utes.

Hong Kong’s High Court last week backed a gov­ern­ment de­mand to bar two re­cently elected law­mak­ers from the city’s leg­is­la­ture, af­ter the court and Bei­jing both ruled they had in­sulted China when tak­ing their oath of of­fice.

Be­fore the rul­ing, 2,000 lawyers protested against Bei­jing step­ping in and in­ter­pret­ing the city’s mini-con­sti­tu­tion in the mid­dle of the law­suit, a move they said in­ter­fered with Hong Kong’s ju­di­cial independence.

Le­ung said Xi af­firmed that the le­gal in­ter­pre­ta­tion was “nec­es­sary”. – Reuters

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