By KEVIN DERBY
A recent protest at the airport in Hong Kong
Florida’s two senators on Capitol Hill weighed in on China’s crackdown on protests in Hong Kong in recent days.
The protests, which started over an extradition policy that could lead activists in Hong Kong to be deported to mainland China, have resulted in the shutdown of the Hong Kong airport.
Weighing in on the protests, U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., ripped into the Chinese regime and on Wednesday urged President Trump to stay strong.
“I applaud President Trump for taking strong action to hold China accountable,” said Scott. “China has shown it can’t be trusted. Right now, they are violating human rights and breaking their agreement to give Hong Kong autonomy and freedom. Now more than ever, the president must be aggressive and stay strong against China. We have to continue putting economic pressure on China, while doing everything we can to support U.S. taxpayers and job creators.”
“China is not our friend — that much is clear,” Scott had said a day earlier.“They do not support freedom or the rights of individuals. Right now, China is attempting to put an end to the prosperity and remaining political freedom of Hong Kong. But China’s efforts to silence opposition and dissent won’t be tolerated. American taxpayers cannot continue to support China’s aggression, and must start supporting American businesses over Chinese products. This is about protecting human rights.
“The United States, and all the freedom-loving nations around the world, must stand ready to swiftly move to defend freedom if China escalates the conflict in Hong Kong,” Scott added.
U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee member Marco Rubio, R-Fla., also took aim at the Chinese regime.
“China’s escalating threats against HongKong is not an ‘internal matter,” Rubio insisted Tuesday. “It’s a blatant violation of commitment to Hong Kong’s autonomy Beijing made in an international treaty.
“And given their history of repression, Chinese troops massed on border is cause for grave concern,” he added.
Rubio followed up on Wednesday morning on Twitter.
“Actions of the Chinese government against Hong Kong a cautionary lesson for anyone thinking about any deal with them,” he insisted. “They signed a treaty promising autonomy and democracy for Hong Kong. They will agree to anything to get a deal. But they have no intention of keeping those promises.”
Over in the U.S. House, most of the Florida delegation has been silent on the protests but U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Fla., who leads Republicans on the U.S. House Asia and the Pacific Subcommittee, weighed in on them this week.
“The continuation of Hong Kong protests, including today’s closing of the city’s international airport, shows that rising resentment in Hong Kong is not simply a result of the ill-fated extradition law, but the continued encroachment on freedoms and liberties by Xi Jinping and the CCP,” Yoho insisted on Monday.