Hong Kong leader accuses US of 'double standard' on protests

Hong Kong’s leader on Tuesday said protests in the U.S. are an example of “double standards” held by foreign governments who are criticizing Beijing’s push for national security legislation that will impact the semi-autonomous territory.

“We have recently seen these kind of double standards most clearly with the riots in the United States,” Chief Executive Carrie Lam said in a briefing with reporters, according to the Associated Press

“We can see how local authorities have reacted. But then last year when we had similar riots in Hong Kong, what was their position?”

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The U.S. last year had sharply condemned escalating violence between police and protesters in Hong Kong following months-long demonstrations in the territory against efforts by Beijing to impose more control.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden on Trump's refusal to commit to peaceful transfer of power: 'What country are we in?' Romney: 'Unthinkable and unacceptable' to not commit to peaceful transition of power Two Louisville police officers shot amid Breonna Taylor grand jury protests MORE announced last week he is planning to end “special treatment” for Hong Kong in response to Beijing moving forward on legislation imposing a National Security Law on the territory, that is likely to criminalize acts of “sedition, secession and terrorism,” which with the U.S. criticizes as violating the city-territories autonomy granted under the “one-country, two systems” treaty.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Lam on Tuesday said the U.S. was “hurting their own interests in Hong Kong” if Trump moved ahead on sanctions. 

“Foreign governments have been responding in a high-profile manner, some have threatened certain actions, and I can only say that they are adopting double standards,” she said, according to the AP.

Lam also said Washington is looking at the situation in Hong Kong through “tinted glasses,” as Trump has called for law enforcement to “dominate” the streets in a show of force against protestors demonstrating for over a week against racial inequality and police violence against African Americans.

“They take their own country’s national security very seriously, but for the security of our country, especially the situation in Hong Kong, they are looking at it through tinted glasses,” she said, according to the AP.

Lam is leading a delegation to Beijing on Wednesday to discuss with Chinese leaders the drafting of the final text of the National Security Law, expected to be developed over the coming weeks and implemented on Hong Kong in September.