fredag 9. august 2019

China’s Paramilitary Police Could Crush Hong Kong

The paramilitary PAP actually does much of the dirty work domestically in clamping down on internal dissent. Tasked with maintaining internal security as well as counterterrorism, the PAP is very active in Xinjiang and Tibet, China’s two most rebellious regions and consequently the most repressed. In times of war, the PAP is also tasked with providing support to the PLA.

In Xinjiang, the PAP has been heavily involved over the past decade in dealing with demonstrations and conducting raids and pursuing alleged insurgents. The PAP was deployed in Urumqi the evening of the 2009 riots, with, Uighur witnesses say, a free-fire policy and easy trigger fingers. By now, Xinjiang seems to be largely controlled, with more than a million Uighurs held in detention camps there.

The PAP also has a strong presence in Tibet, where it put down a wave of protests in March 2008 also known as the “3-14 riots” in Chinese media.

Beyond these regions, the PAP has been active across China in putting down mass demonstrations on issues such as labor disputes and environmental concerns. This was especially prevalent in the 2000s when the PAP was involved in brutal incidents including crushing a power plant protest in Shanwei, Guangdong—during which the PAP reportedly killed 20 people—and blockading the village of Wukan, also in Guangdong, which famously protested over abuse of power, in 2011. If China were to actually invade and overrun Taiwan, the PAP would likely play a huge role in suppressing urban resistance.