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Xi warns Hong Kong and Macau in ‘one China’ message

Xi warns Hong Kong and Macau in ‘one China’ message
Security has been tight during Xi’s two-day visit to Macau to mark the 15th anniversary of the gambling hub’s handover from Portugal, just days after police cleared the last remaining protest sites in neighbouring Hong Kong.

Reporters on the airport tarmac waiting for Xi’s arrival in Macau on Friday were not allowed to hold umbrellas — the symbol of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement — and were handed raincoats instead.

A small group of protesters had also attempted to walk to where Xi was staying while holding yellow umbrellas. Police stopped them, saying the area was “restricted”.

Xi warned both territories on Saturday against a “misguided approach”. “We must both adhere to the ‘one China’ principle and respect the difference of the two systems,” Xi said at the inauguration of Macau’s chief executive Fernando Chui, who was selected for a second term by a pro-Beijing committee in August.

“At no time should we focus only on one side to the neglect of the other. This is the only way leading to sound and steady progress. Otherwise a misguided approach from the beginning, just like putting one’s left foot into the right shoe, would lead us to nowhere,” Xi said.

More than 100 people are expected to turn out for a pro-democracy rally in the historic centre of Macau on Saturday afternoon.

“In the light of Hong Kong’s umbrella movement, I think Macau people should escalate our actions for democracy,” local protest leader Jason Chao told AFP.

“We need a democratic political system in which the citizens can hold the officials accountable,” Chao said, adding that despite a huge economic boom in the past decade, the quality of life for citizens has been on the decline, with government officials seen as too close to big business. 


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