Mon, Aug 19, 2019 - Page 4 News List

A bad year for Xi clouds PRC celebrations

AFP, BEIJING

Hong Kong, which was handed back by Britain to China in 1997, is ruled under a “one country, two systems” policy that gives citizens liberties unseen on mainland China.

Protesters say those rights have been steadily eroded and have openly criticized an increasingly assertive Beijing — provoking fears China could resort to a heavy-handed intervention to quash the unrest, unleashing disastrous consequences.

However, despite the hurdles facing him, the embattled leader’s hold on China remains firm — for now.

“None of the challenges has ‘blown up’ sufficiently for anyone within the top leadership to openly challenge him. As long as they stay in the shadow, Xi remains in charge,” Tsang said.

While international criticism mounts, analysts say that Xi and the CCP can potentially exploit the attacks on him to serve Beijing’s broader ideological needs.

“The CCP media machine has successfully framed the trade war and Hong Kong protests as a result of unfair foreign intervention that seeks to perturb China’s rise,” Olcott said.

“Xi will play up this narrative at the 70th anniversary celebrations, and stress that China must forge its own development path according to the chairman’s guiding ideology.”

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