UK owes Chinese Consulate General a solemn apology: Global Times editorial
Published: Dec 16, 2022 12:07 AM
The Chinese Consulate General in Manchester Photo: http://manchester.china-consulate.gov.cn/

The Chinese Consulate General in Manchester Photo: http://manchester.china-consulate.gov.cn/

What does calling black white mean? What does making a false countercharge mean? The UK gave us a textbook demonstration. On Wednesday, the country's Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs James Cleverly issued a statement criticizing China for the violent disruptive incident against the Chinese Consulate General in Manchester two months ago. He should have represented the British government to make a solemn apology to the Chinese Consulate General. Two months have passed, and the facts are clear. Now the British government does not admit it, worse, it wants to make a fuss out of it. We must express ourselves clearly.

As we all know, embassies and consulates are not ordinary places. In China, all foreign embassies and consulates, including the British, have armed police on guard to ensure their safety and order. Violent raids on embassies and consulates are not only serious violations of the law, but the host country should also be held accountable for the lack of security it's supposed to provide. On October 16, under the connivance and organization of British anti-China forces, more than 40 "Hong Kong independence" activists deliberately planned an illegal assembly at the gate of the Chinese Consulate General in Manchester, surrounded, insulted and violently attacked Chinese diplomats, seriously damaging the safety and dignity of the Chinese Consulate General and its personnel. When such a thing happens, the UK government shouldn't shirk its responsibility.

How did these perpetrators gather in front of the Chinese Consulate General? And when these perpetrators illegally broke into the premises of the Consulate General and attacked the staff, where were the British police? In the face of violent activities, diplomats were forced to defend themselves. Don't the British police feel ashamed? It must be emphasized that the premises and personnel of Chinese embassies and consular missions are inviolable. According to international law including the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and relevant agreements between China and the UK, the British government has the obligation to protect the safety and dignity of the premises and personnel of Chinese embassies and consular missions.  

After the incident happened, the UK should have taken responsibility in no time, apologize to our Consulate General and its personnel who were disturbed, and hold the perpetrators accountable, but what did the UK do? The British government failed to effectively prevent the raids and attacks of anti-China forces and failed to protect the premises and personnel of the Consulate General. Instead, it deliberately sided with the anti-China forces and pointed the finger at the Chinese staff who were assaulted. In the absence of a judicial investigation, it even declared that the Chinese personnel had "committed a crime," and called the normal rotation of Chinese consular officials "fleeing the UK." Is there still the rule of law? Is there still justice?

The anti-China forces hidden in the UK seemed very excited, like a cat smelling fish. They wanted to humiliate China. The British government has cooperated overtly and covertly. The Greater Manchester Police made an extremely excessive request to revoke the diplomatic immunity of six officials of the Chinese Consulate General. The British police are famous for their shocking inefficiency and indifference to responsibility, but they were abnormally active when the targets were Chinese diplomats. Is this normal? The officials of our Consulate General returned to China due to normal personnel rotation. This is our right and there is no need to report to the British side.

We urge the British side to reflect on its own mistake, earnestly fulfill its international obligations, and stop political manipulation. If the British side still wants to talk about "upholding the rule of law," it should first make a solemn apology to the Chinese side and make a serious guarantee: stop shielding anti-China forces, and ensure that the premises and personnel of Chinese embassies and consulates are not violated.

It has long been an open secret that the UK has shielded, favored, and connived "Hong Kong independence" forces. London has almost become a "base camp of Hong Kong independence." It not only interfered in China's internal affairs under the guise of "freedom of speech," but also played an extremely bad role in inciting and instigating "Hong Kong independence" forces. These "Hong Kong independence" forces have received large sums of funding in the UK for a long time and received various political supports. The "Hong Kong Independence Party" whose purpose is to split China is also registered in the UK and has been publicly engaging in separatist activities in the country for a long time. If China openly supported Northern Ireland's independence, wouldn't those British anti-China politicians freak out?

We can clearly see that although Hong Kong returned to the motherland long ago, some British people still can't let go of their old colonial dreams, and want to rebuild their influence on Hong Kong affairs through those "Hong Kong independence" forces who betrayed their country and people. No matter how much "human rights" and "democracy" wrapping paper is used to cover up this true intention, it will only make people feel hypocritical and ridiculous.