White House: U.S. supports “aspirations of the Hong Kong people”
WASHINGTON – The White House is expressing support for the protesters in Hong Kong who are seeking increased democracy in the city.
The U.S. government is closely watching democracy protests in Hong Kong and said it supports the “aspirations of the Hong Kong people,”
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said on Monday, “The United States supports universal suffrage in Hong Kong in accordance with the basic law and we support the aspirations of the Hong Kong people.”
Earnest said, “We believe that the basic legitimacy of the chief executive in Hong Kong will be greatly enhanced if the basic law’s ultimate aim of selection of the chief executive by universal suffrage is fulfilled.”
Earnest made the remarks to reporters at a daily briefing at the White House.
Tens of thousands of mostly student protesters in Hong Kong are demanding full democracy and have called on the city’s leader, Leung Chun-ying, to step down.
The protests, with no single identifiable leader, bring together a mass movement of mostly tech-savvy students who have grown up with freedoms not enjoyed in mainland China
The Chinese Government is not accepting the moves by protesters.
Hong Kong protesters defy police in push for democracy
Protesters say they’re unafraid they are standing firm in their fight for democracy, despite recent clashes with police. Tens of thousands of demonstrators, camped out in Hong Kong’s central business district, are demanding full democracy.
Protesters are calling on the city’s leader, Leung Chun-ying, to step down. Some are calling it the “Umbrella Revolution” – with umbrellas being used as sun shields, but also as protection against pepper spray.
“I was there when they first started firing the first tear gas. We were all harmless people, you see here we’re using umbrellas to protect ourselves.” The unrest is the worst Hong Kong has seen since China took back control in 1997.
But the police are not backing down, and are calling on the demonstrators to leave the streets.
VIDEO by Reuters