Beyond Hong Kong, an Emboldened Xi Jinping Pushes the Boundaries

BEIJING—Less than four months ago, Xi Jinping faced the biggest crisis of his leadership, as it was bruised by China’s initial, bungled response to the coronavirus. He has since pulled off an extraordinary turnaround, buoyed by Beijing’s reported success in curbing the virus while the U.S. and many other democracies wrestle with it. Mr. Xi has seized the moment to gain ground in areas central to his “China Dream” of a strong unified nation, on par with—if not surpassing—the U.S., while brushing aside government shortcomings. … Source link

The Times view on Britain’s responsibilities to Hong Kong: Freedom Curtailed | Comment

Nobody should underestimate the gravity of the Chinese parliament approving a national security law for Hong Kong yesterday. What it represents, in simple terms, is the end of Hong Kong’s status as a semi-autonomous statelet under the umbrella of the People’s Republic. The promise and legal undertaking made in 1997 that China and Hong Kong would be “one country, two systems” has been broken. The new law is expected to criminalise a variety of acts, including the vague offence of undermining the power or authority of the central Chinese government.…

US, China diplomats fight over Hong Kong | Tenterfield Star

The United States and China have clashed over Hong Kong at the United Nations after Beijing opposed a request by Washington for the Security Council to meet over China’s plan to impose new national security legislation on the territory. The US mission to the United Nations on Wednesday said in a statement that the issue was “a matter of urgent global concern that implicates international peace and security” and therefore warranted the immediate attention of the 15-member council. China “categorically rejects the baseless request” because the national security legislation for…

Hong Kong, Taiwan, Ladakh, South China Sea – What is driving Beijing’s sudden belligerence?

Representational image&nbsp | &nbspPhoto Credit:&nbspiStock Images As the world grapples with its biggest health and economic crisis in decades, China has made aggressive moves in the South China Sea, upped the ante on Taiwan, is involved in a potentially dangerous stand-off with India in Ladakh, and is on the verge of quashing Hong Kong’s autonomy. What’s going on? China is known to be prickly about all these territorial matters, but it’s difficult to shake off the impression that a concerted effort by the Communist Party leadership is underway to…

In Hong Kong and beyond, China moves to consolidate position of strength as country emerges from pandemic

Sometimes, the best time to act isn’t when you’re at your strongest, but when your rivals are weakest. As much of the world continues to reel from the coronavirus pandemic, China is flexing its muscles in Hong Kong, the South China Sea and along its border with India, all the while ramping up aggressive rhetoric towards Taiwan and the United States. Beijing may have seen its global standing take a hit due to the coronavirus — and a widespread perception that China mismanaged the initial handling of it — but…

Hong Kong move exposes China’s superpower fail

The implicit hope in Hong Kong in 1997 was that over the agreed 50 years of one country, two systems, Hong Kong and a reforming China would converge. Except history has not turned out that way. Few ever expected multi-party democracy in China – though China’s sacked premier Zhao Ziyang grasped its connection to market economics before he died under house arrest in 2005. But most assumed that Asia’s economic liberalisation at least would accelerate through China too. Under President Xi, China is modernising instead as a techno-autocracy, with party-led…

Why China’s Move to Rein In Hong Kong Is Just the Start

China’s move to strip away another layer of Hong Kong’s autonomy was not a rash impulse. It was a deliberate act, months in the making. It took into account the risks of international umbrage and reached the reasonable assumption that there would not be a significant geopolitical price to pay. Chinese troops squared off again last week with India’s along their contentious border in the Himalayas. All are longstanding tensions, but the decision to impose new national security laws on Hong Kong, bypassing the semiautonomous territory’s own legislative process, shows…

Why China’s move to rein in Hong Kong is just the start

BEIJING: China’s move to strip away another layer of Hong Kong’s autonomy was not a rash impulse. It was a deliberate act, months in the making. It took into account the risks of international umbrage and reached the reasonable assumption that there would not be a significant geopolitical price to pay. As a provocative move, it is just the latest. With the world distracted by the coronavirus pandemic’s devastating toll, China has taken a series of aggressive actions in recent weeks to flex its economic, diplomatic and military muscle across…

Hong Kong arrests and Taiwan flybys: China advances its interests during Covid-19 crisis | World news

China has been accused of using the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to take some bold and provocative actions, including expansions in the South China Sea, crackdowns on activists in Hong Kong and further detention of activists in the mainland. Some analysts have suggested Beijing is sending a message that China’s aggressive foreign policy is still business as usual, or testing its adversaries for weaknesses. Rounding up activists The frequent protests that have rocked Hong Kong for months were already in a lull when the outbreak started, but amid fears…

China uses coronavirus as cover to erode Hong Kong freedoms — Quartz

In one fell swoop, more than a dozen veteran titans of Hong Kong’s democracy movement were arrested on Saturday (April 18) for their roles in last year’s large-scale protests. While the government has been detaining opposition figures with increasing frequency—including an ominous midnight arrest of a local councillor on charges of sedition—the weekend’s mass arrest is unprecedented in scale and prominence, and signals a major step-up in China’s crackdown on the city’s opposition movement. The arrests came as China is just starting to emerge from its first wave of the…