Although most analysts consider a full-blown crackdown unlikely, fears of worse to come have hovered over Hong Kong
Watching the Hong Kong protests from afar, Chinese dissident-artist Ai Weiwei fears the worst, warning of a repeat of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown in Beijing.“In 1989, the whole world was watching and the tanks crushed the students, ... a peaceful demonstration.”
Ai, a long-time and outspoken government critic, says he has no illusions that Beijing values order above all else.The New York-trained artist had confronted authorities especially after the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, charging that corruption and shoddily built state school buildings had heightened the death toll.
“As a victim of the Chinese authoritarian state, I have been secretly detained, I’ve been beaten, I have been put in jail, nobody knew where ... so what am I gonna say?”“They should defend ‘one country, two systems’. They should not let Hong Kong’s freedom disappear. And the only way they can do that is to keep fighting.”
Since then, he said, he has witnessed the situation get “worse and worse, because the people are so frustrated”, while police started using tear gas and batons.“Western countries want to take advantage of China ... the factory of the world,” he said, describing it as a country with “no human rights, no regulations on working conditions, no environmental concerns”.
Hong Kong democracy activist Joshua Wong, in a similar vein, told Germany’s Bild daily that he did “not understand how Germany, as part of the free world, can cooperate with China in this way”.
Read more: Mail & Guardian
Ai Weiwei fears 'Tiananmen' crackdown in Hong KongAi's bleak warning comes after two months of protests that have turned increasingly violent, and as Beijing has massed security forces nearby on the mainland in a show of force.
Chinese officials demand to examine phones of travellers from Hong KongThe checks add to signs Beijing is lifting efforts to control the flow of information on the Hong Kong protest amid fears it could inspire similar unrest in China
Hong Kong tense as weekend of protests begins with teachers' rally in rainFollowing the escalation in violence during the past few days, the demonstrations this weekend will provide a litmus test as to whether the protest movement can retain the broad support that it has appeared to enjoy.
Hong Kong tense as weekend of protests begins with teachers' rally in rainOver a thousand Hong Kong school teachers braved thunderstorms on Saturday to start a weekend of anti-government demonstrations that some activists fear could see tougher police tactics on the city's streets. Following the escalation in violence during the past few days, the demonstrations this weekend will provide a litmus test as to whether the protest movement can retain the broad support that it has appeared to enjoy.
Hong Kong teachers rally in thunderstorm at start of weekend of protestsThe teachers rally was approved by police and was peaceful.
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