Xi Jinping’s presence at Hong Kong anniversary still unclear

HONG KONG: Questions continue to surround whether the Chinese leader Xi Jinping will attend the 25th anniversary of Hong Kongthe transition from British rule to China and the inauguration of the territory’s new leader.
China’s official Xinhua news agency said Xi would participate in the July 1 celebrations but did not specify whether he would visit the city.
As with most matters of judgment Communist Party, the travel plans of the top leaders are generally kept secret. However, Mr. Xi did not travel outside of mainland China during the Covid-19 pandemic.
China has stuck with its “zero-COVID” strategy of completely eliminating outbreaks by mass testing the population and locking down buildings, residential areas or entire cities for weeks at a time. time. Hong Kong is seeing infections rise again recently after a flood earlier this year threatened to overwhelm the country’s hospitals.
While the celebrations in Hong Kong are purely symbolic, they will include Friday’s installation by the former security chief John Leewho led a harsh crackdown on pro-democracy protests in 2019, as the city’s chief executive.
Since the protests began, Beijing has adopted national security laws that have sent Hong Kong political activists to jail, silence or exile; restricted freedom of expression and assembly; and remove or remove qualified persons from public office if they are deemed unpatriotic.
In 2017, Mr. Xi delivered a speech at the 20th anniversary celebration in which he pledged the central government would stand firm against any challenge to its administration.

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