China says US hit by racism, police violence, slams Washington double standards
China says the ongoing unrest in the United States over the tragic killing of an unarmed black man by the police has highlighted the severe problems of racism and police violence there.
According to Press TV, the widespread protests broke out in the US when video footage showed a white Minneapolis police officer kneeling on the neck of a 46-year-old black man, George Floyd, for nearly nine minutes before he died on May 25.
His death caused an ongoing outrage across a nation that is politically and racially divided during a polarizing presidential campaign, reigniting protests that have flared repeatedly in recent years over police killings of black Americans.
"Black people’s lives are also lives. Their human rights must also be guaranteed,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Zhao Lijian during a press conference in capital Beijing on Monday, referring to the death in custody of George Floyd.
“The current situation reflects once more the severity of the problems of racism and police violence in the US,” he added.
Separately on Monday, China’s Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying also took aim at the White House.
“I can't breathe,” she said on Twitter, with a screenshot of a tweet by US State Department Spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus that had criticised China's policy in Hong Kong. Hua was quoting the words Floyd was heard saying repeatedly before his death.
Beijing has also lambasted Washington’s double standards in supporting Hong Kong’s separatist protesters.
Washington has for months been supporting Hong Kong separatist and anti-government protesters, who in many cases turned to violence, including vandalizing public property. It has also expressed great concern for Hong Kong’s so-called autonomy recently after Beijing passed a proposal for National Security Law on the island.
The new law is expected to criminalize sedition, secession, and subversion against the mainland. It would also pave the way for Chinese national security institutions to operate in the city for the first time since 1997, when Hong Kong returned from British to Chinese rule.
Last month, US President Donald Trump warned that Washington would react “very strongly” to the new law in due time.
On Friday, he said that he would restrict Chinese graduate students and start reversing the special status enjoyed by semi-autonomous Hong Kong in customs and other areas in protest against the new national security law.