“The US’s frequent interference in Hong Kong affairs will inevitably lead to resolute opposition and strong indignation of all Chinese people, including Hong Kong compatriots,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Friday.
Hua made the statement on Thursday in response to remarks by US State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus, who called China a “thuggish regime” for disclosing the personal details of an American diplomat who had met with anti-government protesters in Hong Kong.
Ortagus had said “leaking an American diplomat’s private information, pictures, names of their children… is what a thuggish regime would do.”
Hua said that, “Hong Kong is China’s Hong Kong. The will of the Chinese people brooks neither insult nor bullying.”
On Thursday, the Hong Kong office of China’s Foreign Ministry summoned senior officials from the US consulate general in the city and filed stern representations with them over the contact. For the past nearly two months, Hong Kong has been the scene of protests over an extradition bill that would have allowed suspects to be tried in mainland courts.
While the government of the semi-autonomous Chinese region has effectively backed away from the bill, protests have persisted, with individuals sometimes resorting to violence and vandalizing government buildings.
Washington adamantly backs the unrest in Hong Kong despite official protests by Beijing, which warns against foreign meddling in the city’s affairs.
The US was also among the Western countries that opposed the extradition bill.
Hong Kong has been governed under a “one-country, two-system” model since the city — a former British colony — was returned to China in 1997.