|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Remarks on August 5, 2019|
Q: On August 2, Congressmen Smith and McGovern, co-chairs of the Lantos Human Rights Commission of the US Congress, wrote a letter to US Secretary of State Pompeo and Secretary of Commerce Ross, urging the US government not to help the "repression" of Hong Kong's "peaceful demonstrations"and rejecting the idea of defining those demonstrations as "riots". I wonder what is China's response?
A: The relevant US individuals are calling black white with ill intentions. We firmly oppose that.
The violent radicals in Hong Kong smashed their way into the Legislative Building and the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong SAR with iron sticks. They wantonly vandalized public facilities, obstructed public traffic and illegally stored dangerous goods and offensive weapons. They attacked the police in lethal means, beat them and even bit their fingers off. They tarnished the national emblems and national flags. Those scenes have been witnessed by people around the world. How on earth do those individuals in the US call them "peaceful demonstrations"? All people with conscience will agree those violent behaviors have already crossed the bottom-line of any civilized society. They crossed the line of peaceful demonstration and freedom of expression. They gravely trampled on Hong Kong's rule of law, threatens local people's safety and property and violates the principle of "one country, two systems". Such things simply cannot be tolerated. The US doesn't mention at all and has turned a blind eye to the power abuse and violent law enforcement of police at home. But at the same time, it blatantly criticized or even tried to smear the professional, civilized and constrained law enforcement of Hong Kong police. This will only help the world to see how arrogant, biased, hypocritical, ruthless, selfish and bossy the US is. Is rampant violence and collapse of rule of law something the US calls "human rights and freedom"?
We again urge the US to stop conniving at violent criminals, undermining the administering by the SAR government in accordance with law and interfering in Hong Kong affairs. No one should underestimate China's firm resolve to implement the "one country, two systems" principle and safeguard prosperity and stability in Hong Kong.
Q: US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said that China's behaviors have disrupted stability in the Indo-Pacific. He hoped to deploy intermediate-range missiles in Asia in a few months. What is China's response? China owns missiles with an effective range that covers Japan or Guam. Why does it oppose the idea that the US can have intermediate-range missiles in Asia?
A: First, the so-called allegation that "China disrupted stability in the Indo-Pacific" is just shifting blames in an irresponsible manner. For a long time the US has been grossly interfering in the affairs of regional countries in the Asia Pacific. Politically, it has tried to drive a wedge between them by promoting so-called "Indo-Pacific strategy". It has adopted a selfish beggar-thy-neighbor approach in economic affairs while making military deployment and strengthening military allies in the region. It's crystal clear who is undermining regional stability in Asia-Pacific.
For some time the US has been using China as an excuse on the INF Treaty and other issues, hyping up so-called "China's missile threat" in total disregard of the facts. This is just what the US always does to shift blames to other countries. Despite strong international opposition, the US chose to withdraw from the INF Treaty. Now it is hastily seeking to deploy intermediate-range missiles in Asia. This in fact reveals the real intention of the US withdrawal from the treaty.
Secondly, the logic of your second question is absurd. China pursues a defense policy that is defensive in nature. We develop military power out of self-defense purpose. We do not intend to and will not pose a threat to any country.
The range of intermediate-range missiles is limited, so their location is important. China is a large country with a big population. We need necessary defense capacity to defend against invasion and safeguard sovereignty and territorial integrity. All of China's land-based short- and intermediate-range missiles are deployed within our territory, which testifies to the defensive nature of our defense policy. However, if the US deploys intermediate-range missiles in Asia-Pacific, especially around China, its aim will apparently be offensive. If the US insists on doing so, the international and regional security will inevitably be severely undermined. China will not just sit idly by and watch our interests being compromised. What's more, we will not allow any country to stir up troubles at our doorstep. We will take all necessary measures to safeguard national security interests. We hope the US will exercise prudence and refrain from escalating tensions or undermining international and regional peace.
Q: According to reports, China has rejected the visit by the Green Party politician Margarete Bause as part of the Bundestag committee on digitization. Another Bundestag committee, the human rights committee, was also refused entry into China, which had planned a trip to Beijing, Lhasa and Urumqi in September. Is this true? How do you respond to that? Why were these two visits canceled?
A: The Chinese Embassy in Germany has made clear its position on this question you raised. I would like to reiterate that China values strengthening cooperation and exchange between the legislatures and supports the normal exchange between the leaders, committees and friendly groups of the two sides. This lawmaker you mentioned, who is a member of the human rights committee, has tried to pass for a member of the committee on digitization to visit China without communicating with China beforehand. As a sovereign country and host, China has the right to reject uninvited people. China surely doesn't welcome anyone that has been lobbying on behalf of anti-China forces and harm China's interests.
Regarding the rejection of the visit by Bundestag human rights committee, as I understand, certain self-important lawmaker in Germany is just grandstanding on this issue. The two sides in fact have never had any communication on the visit in September, let alone canceled it. As I recall, China did invited the human rights committee to visit China two years ago, but it decided not to come. You may ask the German side why it was that.
Q: Many casualties were caused by two mass shootings in Texas and Ohio, the US. I wonder if you could comment on that?
A: We noted the relevant reports. China opposes violence in all its form. We express condolences for the passing of the victims and sympathies to the injured and the bereaved families.