OPINIONS Observer: Punishing violent rioters essential for Hong Kong's prosperity

OPINIONS

Observer: Punishing violent rioters essential for Hong Kong's prosperity

By Zheng Shiting | People's Daily app

10:06, November 06, 2019

Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Chief Executive of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Carrie Lam in Shanghai on Monday. Xi demanded unswerving efforts to stop and punish violent activities in accordance with the law to safeguard the well-being of the general public in Hong Kong. Ending violence and chaos and restoring order in a timely manner remain the most important tasks not only for Hong Kong's future, but also for the prosperity and stability of the 7 million people who live in the city.

The riots in Hong Kong have been going on for five months. Regardless of legality, morality and humanity, unscrupulous radicals have been committing violent crimes, which have badly damaged the rule of law, personal safety, ethics, livelihoods and the international image of Hong Kong. Every citizen who loves Hong Kong is well aware that, for Hong Kong, the most dangerous predicament is the prevailing violence and dysfunctional rule of law; the most popular opinion is to oppose violence, support the rule of law, maintain peace and promote development; and the most important outcome is to curb the violence and restore order.

Since the violent protests erupted in June, the HKSAR government led by Lam has been on the frontline of fighting crime and protecting civilians. The government has proven that it has determination and effective lawful measures to deal with the current situation. During the darkest hour, Hong Kong police stand out as a tower of strength in stopping violence and maintaining the "one country, two systems" principle. Patriots who love Hong Kong have voiced their support for the rule of law and the restoration of social order. Defending their homeland bullishly, they refuse to kowtow to intimidation and slander by rioters. They are well-qualified as justice defenders.

Meanwhile, China's central government has expressed a high degree of trust and support for the HKSAR. The central government will always be a powerful and secure support for Hong Kong's stability and development.

When insulted, orally abused, restrained and even bullied, why have some university presidents not given in? Encountering bricks, petrol bombs, social media attacks and threats against personal safety, why have Hong Kong police still been holding the line? Because they know that legally preventing and punishing violence is the only way to safeguard the freedom of all Hong Kong residents from the threat of violence, and to foil opposition leaders’ conspiracy to destroy Hong Kong.

From the shouts of "We are all Chinese," "We are all flag-bearers," and "I support Hong Kong police," to the solidarity of "support the police, support the chief executive" and "anti-violence, save Hong Kong." From the flashmob of the national anthem to "Protect Hong Kong Together," from disclosing the violence in Hong Kong at international conferences to participating in the online petition of "Anti-black violence, no masks, protect our homes," from resisting rioters to spontaneously clearing roadblocks and cleaning up "poster walls," more and more people are joining the ranks of justice to safeguard national sovereignty, security and unity, and to maintain the prosperity and stability of Hong Kong. It reflects the deepest love for the well-being of the general public in Hong Kong.

The law derives authority from its integrity and non-exceptionality. The system of law would be marred if crimes went unpunished. The rule of law would not exist if laws were deprived of authority. Therefore, the central government will fully support the SAR government and its police force to stop violence and punish radical rioters in accordance with the law. The best way to bring peace back to Hong Kong is to launch a relentless crackdown on violent crimes.

It is everyone’s responsibility to guard their own home. Hong Kong police say from a truly broken heart that Hong Kong currently "owns nothing but violence," and it is hoped that the public will not become numb to violence and not allow violence to become a way of life for the Hong Kong people. When violence covers every corner of Hong Kong, why are you still watching and hesitating? Everyone concerned about Hong Kong should dare to say no to violence and to the acts of breaking the rule of law. That is the voice of the general public and also the well-being of all in Hong Kong.

(Compiled by Ryan Yaoran Yu and Elaine Yue Lin)

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