torsdag 8. august 2019

With Hong Kong divided, Beijing tries new tactic to discredit protest movement

It has become a war of attrition. Ahead of the tenth consecutive weekend of protests in Hong Kong, neither the government nor demonstrators are giving an inch of ground. But what of the residents who find themselves caught between the two sides, their neighborhoods wracked by tear gas, barricades and weekly violent clashes?

Since June 9, hundreds of thousands of Hong Kong citizens have come out to support the protests and voice their dissatisfaction with the city's government and its policies.As recently as last weekend, families and older citizens had joined rallies to show their support. But there has been concern over whether escalating acts of violence, including the trashing of Hong Kong's government headquarters, have undermined this backing. It is this potential "silent majority" that Beijing is hoping to connect with as part of a new tactic experts say is intended to discredit anti-government protesters and bolster support for mainland China.