The Chinese government denounces Taiwan’s plan to help Hongkongers who will flee to the island, saying giving protection to “rioters” will only harm the Taiwanese people and will interfere in the city’s affairs.
Taiwan has announced on Thursday it is putting up an office dedicated to help Hongkongers who will consider relocating to the island as Beijing tightens its grip on the former British colony, with the drafting of a new national security law as its latest move.
The new office is scheduled to open on July 01, which also marks the anniversary of the handover of Hong Kong to China from the British government in 1997 with the promise of continued, wide-ranging freedoms under China’s “one country, two systems”.
China’s policy-making Taiwan Affairs Office said in a statement late on Friday, the plan by the “Democratic Progressive Party authority” – China’s standard way of referring to Taiwan’s government – was a political plot to meddle in Hong Kong affairs and sabotage its stability and prosperity.
“Providing shelter for and taking onto the island the rioters and elements who bring chaos to Hong Kong will only continue to bring harm to Taiwan’s people,” it said.
The plots of forces that advocate independence for Hong Kong and Taiwan and also seek to damage “one country, two systems” and split the nation will never succeed, the office said.
Months of anti-government protests in Hong Kong won widespread sympathy in democratic and Chinese-claimed Taiwan, which has welcomed those who have already moved to the island and expects more to come.
Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen last month became the first government leader to pledge measures to help Hong Kong people who leave due to what they see as tightening Chinese controls, crushing their democratic aspirations.
China denies stifling Hong Kong’s freedoms and says the national security law is needed to return order to the global financial hub. (Source: CNA)