National Security Adviser John Bolton on Wednesday, Aug. 14, warned the Chinese communist regime against any possible crackdown on protesters in Hong Kong amid escalating tensions between pro-democracy demonstrators and police.
“The Chinese have to look very carefully at the steps they take because people in America remember Tiananmen Square,” Bolton told Voice of America, referencing the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre in Beijing, China, where thousands of unarmed students were killed by the Chinese communist regime.
“They remember the picture of the man standing in front of the line of tanks,” he continued. “They remember the Statue of Liberty, they remember the voices of the Chinese people asking for freedom and democracy, and they remember the repression of the Chinese government in 1989. It would be a big mistake to create a new memory like that in Hong Kong,” Bolton added.
Bolton’s warning follows the news that the Chinese communist regime has gathered troops and equipment near Hong Kong border.
Beginning in early June, hundreds of thousand people in Hong Kong took to the streets to protest a controversial extradition bill that can extradite its citizens to mainland China. The bill is now suspended but not fully withdrawn. The demonstrations since then have increasingly intensified, where protesters call for autonomy, full democracy, and ask leader Carrie Lam to step down. The demonstration at some point turned violent. Photos and videos showing bloodied protesters clashing with police appear on social media.
Previously, President Trump seemed not very interested in Hong Kong. The president said on Tuesday that he hoped it worked out for everybody, but gave no direct warning to China communist regime against any possible crackdown on protesters.
According to Politico, in recent days, Bolton, and several economic advisers have pushed the president for more assertive action on the Hong Kong demonstrations.
In a series of tweets on Wednesday evening, President Trump mentioned Hong Kong as a condition for a trade deal with China, saying “Of course China wants to make a deal. Let them work humanely with Hong Kong first!”
Bolton said that any misstep by the Chinese regime would “cause an explosion” from Congress.
“The mood in Congress is very volatile at this point and a misstep by the Chinese government, I think, would cause an explosion on Capitol Hill,” he said.