The Interview

Lord Chris Patten: 'Hong Kong's been put into handcuffs by the Chinese regime'

THE INTERVIEW
THE INTERVIEW © FRANCE 24

In an interview with FRANCE 24, Lord Chris Patten, who was the last British governor of Hong Kong, said China had betrayed its commitment to preserve "one country, two systems" in the city. "Hong Kong's been put into handcuffs by the Chinese regime," Lord Patten said, referring to Beijing's crackdown there in recent months. Of the Chinese Communist Party, he said: "You can't trust [it] further than you can spit."

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Lord Patten told FRANCE 24 that China's crackdown on dissent and the erosion of the rule of law were not merely a reaction to recent protest movements in Hong Kong, but a carefully planned move. He accused China's President Xi Jinping of being behind a decision to impose an authoritarian model on the financial hub and a move away from democratic values.

>> Hong Kong dissident Joshua Wong and two others jailed for democracy protests

The former British governor warned that the Chinese Communist Party was eager to impose its will not just on Hong Kong, but on Taiwan as well. He noted that Western countries had become more vocal in expressing their concerns over China's intimidating moves in the region.

Asked about British politics, Lord Patten said that even though he was a former chairman of the Conservative Party, he lamented his party's support for Brexit and described Prime Minister Boris Johnson as "not somebody that you would want to trust very far".

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