July 2, 2019 / 11:59 AM / 2 months ago

Freedoms make Hong Kong special, says UK's Hunt

FILE PHOTO - Jeremy Hunt, a leadership candidate for Britain's Conservative Party, attends a hustings event in Manchester, Britain, June 29, 2019. REUTERS/Andrew Yates

BELFAST (Reuters) - Britain said on Tuesday it would not compromise on its commitment to Hong Kong freedoms and cautioned China that repression was no way to solve the crisis in the former British colony.

“We can never compromise on our values,” Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said while campaigning in Northern Ireland to replace Prime Minister Theresa May.

Hunt said Britain wanted the governments of Hong Kong and China to understand that what makes Hong Kong special are its freedoms, as guaranteed under a 1984 accord between London and Beijing.

“None of us supports the violence we saw on TV last night but we do understand the reason for people’s anger and the reason for people’s fears that their basic freedoms are going to be taken away,” he said.

Reporting by Amanda Ferguson; writing by Michael Holden and Guy Faulconbridge; editing by Stephen Addison

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