585 members of the European Parliament backed the resolution on Thursday, calling for EU sanctions against Hong Kong and mainland officials and a boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympic Games over what it called an “ongoing human rights crackdown” in the SAR. There were 46 votes against and 41 abstentions.
In a statement, the Foreign Ministry’s office said Beijing’s move to bring in the national security law and electoral changes to Hong Kong helped the city transform from chaos to stability and prosperity, and brought the SAR’s democratic development back on track.
“In disregard of history and reality, the European Parliament has repeatedly smeared Hong Kong and attacked China under the pretext of so-called ‘democracy and freedom’ for a publicity stunt. It shows their unreasonable, ignorant and shameless nature,” the statement said.
“They claim to ‘stand with Hong Kong’, but in fact harbour no good intentions. They don’t want to see a stable and prosperous Hong Kong and try to whitewash anti-China elements in Hong Kong. They are still daydreaming of using Hong Kong as a bridgehead against China. Their self-deceiving political farce and ill intentions are doomed to fail,” a spokesman for the office said.
“In violation of international law and the basic norms governing international relations, the European Parliament once again judged others’ democracy with [condescension] and interfered in Hong Kong affairs and China’s internal affairs, which is unacceptable,” the spokesman said.
“Some politicians have repeatedly resorted to political bullying of sanctions and boycott of Olympics, precisely exposing their arrogance and hysteria and will find themselves on a collision course with a great wall of steel forged by over 1.4 billion Chinese people.”
In the resolution passed on Thursday, members of the European Parliament condemned in the strongest terms what they said were severe restrictions on basic freedoms in Hong Kong.
They cited the recent closure of Stand News and Citizen News, saying this will lead to increased pressure from the Chinese authorities on remaining local news publications.
The MEPs also pointed to the disbandment of civil groups and the arrests and jailing of activists and protesters.
They also urged mainland authorities to repeal Hong Kong’s national security law, saying it breaches China’s international commitments and obligations.