Spotlight: U.S. Hong Kong-related acts criticized by global experts

HONG KONG, Oct. 25 (Xinhua) — Global observers hit out at the so-called Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019 and other related acts pushed by U.S. lawmakers, stressing the bills were groundless and biased and could only compound the prolonged unrest in Hong Kong.

NEEDLESS BILLS

David Gosset, a French expert and founder of the Europe-China Forum, thought the acts were groundless. “In Hong Kong, a highly developed Chinese region, the fundamental rights are well protected.”

It is ongoing violent and extremist acts that damaged people’s rights and should be condemned, Gosset said.

“I think it’s a very unwise move by the United States congress, which is not going to help with the matters, but only provoke, making things worse for Hong Kong in the long run,” said Kishore Mahbubani, distinguished fellow at Asia Research Institute of National University of Singapore.

The Hong Kong-related bills still require the support of the U.S. Senate and then the U.S. president to become a law.

“I doubt whether it will achieve that and I don’t personally anticipate it becoming a law,” said Martin Jacques, senior fellow at the Department of Politics and International Studies of University of Cambridge.

TRUE MOTIVE BEHIND

By pushing for the acts, the United States is brutally intervening in China’s internal affairs in pursuit of its own interests, scholars said.

“While protesting about what it claims that Russian interference in its presidential elections, the United States itself is absolutely openly intervening in Hong Kong,” John Ross, former director of Economic and Business Policy of London said, calling the inconsistency “absolutely ridiculous.”

Ross said key figures in so-called protests, actually riots, like Joshua Wong have been visiting the United States and have been supported.

“Some countries including the United States tried to gain their own interests and promote their own views on international affairs,” Victor Larin, vice chairman of the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences said.

Larin pointed out that the U.S. politicians are leveraging the situation in Hong Kong for their own political and economic goals.

DOUBLE STANDARDS

“Western countries would just never endorse the behavior that was right here in their own country,” Jacques said. “It’s only been used as a stick to beat China with.”

While the situation in Hong Kong was still under control, rampant riots broke out in many other places in the world, including Spain and Chile. In some foreign cases, protesters were killed and tanks were deployed.

“The U.S. congress should be condemning what is going on in those places at the present time, rather than Hong Kong,” Ross said. “This is just a typical example of hypocrisy and it’s why nobody can take seriously American statements about human rights and so on because they’re so obviously biased.”

Ross said the rioters are in essence demanding Hong Kong’s secession from China, which also goes against the belief of the United States.

“Abraham Lincoln, who is considered the greatest president in American history, unleashed the army against the South trying to secede from the United States,” Ross said. “The point is that the secession was never allowed for the United States.”

A STABLE HONG KONG BENEFITS ALL

“We all share an interest in the success of Hong Kong, which is such an important economic center of the world and Asia, and we need a Hong Kong that continues to be successful,” Jim Wunderman, president and CEO of the Bay Area Council, a public policy and advocacy organization based in San Francisco, said.

Wunderman said American companies are very hopeful for a resolution of the challenges being faced in Hong Kong. “Our companies are very committed to the relationships that they have here. The sooner the issues can get resolved the better.”

“We hope that Hong Kong will continue to be a center of international trade,” Joan McEntee, former Under Secretary of Commerce of the United States, said.

McEntee in particular mentioned the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. “Hong Kong, as an integral part of the Greater Bay Area, can enjoy a very positive opportunity.”

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