'Sabotage by enemy forces': China threatens protesters with crackdown

“sabotaging enemy forces”
China threatens to crack down on protesters

The Chinese Communist Party is trying to suppress further anti-government protests with threats. Criminal acts will be prosecuted. The leadership in Beijing blames “enemy” forces.

In the face of the biggest wave of protests in China in decades, the country’s political leadership has announced an aggressive crackdown on the unrest. State media reported that the Communist Party’s Policy and Law Committee blamed a meeting on “hostile” elements for disturbing public order.

The background is widespread discontent among the people over the government’s strict measures to stop the spread of the Covid virus. “There is a need to resolve disputes and disputes in a timely manner and help solve people’s practical difficulties,” Xinhua said in a statement. We must, by law, eliminate infiltration and sabotage by hostile forces.” We must also pursue “criminal acts that disturb social order” and effectively maintain general social stability.

The statement did not directly address the weekend protests against strict anti-coronavirus measures such as lockdowns, forced quarantines and mass testing. But the former editor-in-chief of the party newspaper Global Times, Hu Xijin, saw a “clear warning” in the indirect message: “The protesters must have understood this,” the pro-regime commentator wrote on Twitter. “If they repeat these protests, the stakes will increase sharply,” he added.

The unusually broad protest also reveals a deep discontent with the political system. “The cool thing about these protests is that the focus has quickly shifted from the Covid lockdown to larger political issues,” US political scientist Maria Rybnikova wrote on Twitter.

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