London/Beijing: – China issued a threat to the United Kingdom asking it to stop interfering in the internal matters of China and Hong Kong, else these will backfire on the United Kingdom. Recently, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned that preparations were being made to award British citizenship to 3 million people of Hong Kong. China is infuriated with this warning and has started threatening the United Kingdom. These verbal volleys, at each other, clearly indicate the political conflict festering between China and the United Kingdom.
An article written by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was published in ‘Times of London,’ a British daily. Johnson has severely criticised China in this article. The British Prime Minister has expressed deep regret by saying the new security law being imposed on Hong Kong is stripping the city of its autonomy and the freedom enjoyed by the people of Hong Kong. As per the agreement signed between the United Kingdom and China in 1997, the ‘One Country Two Systems’ policy is applicable to Hong Kong. But China is clearly violating the agreement.
Prime Minister Johnson said that if the Chinese rulers continue these actions of imposing the new law in Hong Kong, the British government will not have any other option but to award British citizenship to the residents of Hong Kong. Hong Kong has a population of 7.5 million, and out of these, 3.5 million have British passports. More than 2.5 million people other than these can become eligible for British citizenship. Johnson indicates in his article that the United Kingdom will make major amendments to its visa and citizenship regulations to award British citizenship to these people.
Prime Minister Johnson also said that the United Kingdom is already in talks with its allies if people other than these 3 million decide to leave Hong Kong. British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab had said that the United Kingdom was talking to the countries from the ‘Five Eyes’ group. The United Kingdom has proposed that the members the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand also should accommodate some of these people.
Infuriated by the British initiatives, China has started threatening the United Kingdom. The Chinese foreign ministry reprimanded the United Kingdom, saying, ‘The United Kingdom should take a step backwards and give up the cold war mentality and the colonial outlook. Respect that Hong Kong has been handed over to China.’ Chinese spokesman Zhao Lijian threatened that the United Kingdom should stop interfering in the internal matters of Hong Kong and China or it will backfire on the United Kingdom with severe consequences.
The United Kingdom has reacted immediately to the Chinese threat. The spokesman of the British Prime Minister has warned that the Chinese movements regarding the new security law for Hong Kong violates the agreement between the United Kingdom and China. Therefore, the United Kingdom will take all the steps, henceforth, keeping in view its historical relations and friendship with the people of Hong Kong.