China warns UK not to interfere in its ‘domestic affairs’

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BEIJING, China

The Chinese government has warned its diplomatic partners the UK not to interfere in its domestic affairs amid the ongoing chaos in its autonomous territory Hong Kong.

The Chinese ambassador in the UK Mr. Liu Xiaoming pointed out that relations had been “damaged” by comments by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and others backing the demonstrators’ actions.

Mr. Liu asserted that: “The UK government chose to stand on the wrong side, it has made inappropriate remarks, not only to interfere in the internal affairs of Hong Kong but also to back up the violent lawbreakers,”

He was later summoned to the Foreign Office over the remarks.

British local media reported that a Foreign Office spokesman said Sir Simon McDonald, permanent under secretary and head of the diplomatic service, told the ambassador his comments were “unacceptable and inaccurate.”

Weeks of mass protests in the territory over a controversial extradition bill exploded on Monday, when a group of activists occupied the Legislative Council building for several hours after breaking away from a peaceful protest – raising the colonial-era British flag.

Critics say the extradition bill could be used to send political dissidents from Hong Kong to the mainland.

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