Hong Kong imbroglio - GulfToday

Hong Kong imbroglio


George Floyd

While drawing worldwide flak for the pandemic, China is also in the thick of another storm, namely Hong Kong. And though Trump is having a rough time himself after the brutal murder of George Floyd, I feel he has a valid reason in pulling up China for the trampling on the rights of the people of Hong Kong (“US President to announce strong Hong Kong response,” May 27, Gulf Today).

In light of that the British government’s decision to welcome nearly three million Hong Kongers to live and work in UK if Beijing moves forward with the new security law, is a strong political statement. That Prime Minister Johnson came up with an offer such as this is surprising, especially after the bitter Brexit exercise, which is likely to push millions of EU citizens out of the country.

Hong Kong is a former British colony, no doubt, but if Johnson goes ahead with the plan it will one of the biggest changes in visa regulations in British history, considering that there are over 350,000 Hong Kong residents with British overseas passport as well as over 2.5 million who are eligible to apply for one.

That apart I also feel Trump’s call to punish China for muzzling the World Health Organisation, into not disclosing the information on the coronavirus to the world, deserves to be taken seriously by world leaders.

Tens of thousands of people have died of COVID-19 and thousands more are ailing and yet we do not know the complete picture except for the one dished out by China and WHO. An impartial probe into the origins of the coronavirus is vital to understand how it mutated and spread so quickly. China is objecting to an inquiry and has even threatened Australia which is drumming up international support for a probe.

Trump’s withdrawal of funds to WHO may be unwarranted, but the call for a probe is legitimate.

Caroll Ross — By email

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