US President Barack Obama denied that his country has promoted the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, which the official Chinese press has frequently attributed to foreign interference, in particular the US.
“On the issue of Hong Kong, which did come up in our conversations, I was unequivocal in saying to President Xi that the US had no involvement in fostering the protests that took place there,” said Obama in response to a question during the joint press conference with Chinese President Xi Jinping after two days of meetings in Beijing.
“These issues are ultimately for the people of Hong Kong and people of China to decide,” said Obama.
“But I did describe for him that the United States — as a matter of foreign policy but also as a matter of our values — is gonna consistently speak out on the right of the people to express themselves and encourage the elections that take place in Hong Kong are transparent and fair and reflective of the opinion of the people there,” he added.
The protestors in Hong Kong demand democratic elections of the next head of the local government in 2017 because they can only vote between two or three candidates selected by the capital communicated through an advisory committee.
The Chinese leader said that the Hong Kong protest is an illegal movement and reiterated his support for the local government of the region for managing the situation and maintaining stability.
Xi stressed the Chinese position that Hong Kong is a part of China and there should not be any involvement by others, as Beijing considered this to be an exclusively domestic issue.
He further added that law and order must be maintained in all places and not just in Hong Kong.