State Department Spokesperson Addresses Hong Kong Protests

U.S. Department of State

Department Press Briefing – June 12, 2019

MORGAN ORTAGUS, DEPARTMENT SPOKESPERSON / JUNE 12, 2019

QUESTION: I wanted to know what – do you have a reaction to the continued protests in Hong Kong that seemed to get worse today? And what do you think they say about the future of Hong Kong’s special status?

MS ORTAGUS: So I think we had a very direct statement on Monday regarding that. We, obviously, would like to encourage all sides to exercise restraint and to refrain from violence. Of course, we think that these peaceful protests are incredibly important. And it’s important for the Hong Kong Government to respect these freedom of expressions, respect the right of people to peacefully assemble.

People are protesting, as we know, as it relates to this proposed legislation because they don’t want to be subjugated to the Chinese as it relates to some of their fundamental rights. And so we continue to urge Hong Kong authorities to ensure proper consultation, as we said on Monday, with a broad range of local and international stakeholders. And as it relates to the continued erosion of the “One Country, Two-party Systems[2],” that framework puts at risk Hong Kong’s long-established status in international affairs. It’s something that we think we’re all around the world monitoring very closely.