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Newsline: Chinese consulate in UK accused of beating Hong Kong protester

Activists and lawmakers in the United Kingdom are demanding an investigation after a Hong Kong pro-democracy protester was allegedly beaten on the grounds of the Chinese consulate in Manchester. A pro-democracy group called Hong Kong Indigenous Defence Force had staged a protest outside the consulate in the northern city on Sunday, in opposition to the Chinese Communist Party Congress happening the same day in Beijing. Video of the incident shared widely on social media shows a confrontation breaking out on the sidewalk outside the consulate, with loud shouts heard as people rush towards the gated entrance. The video then appears to show one Hong Kong protester being dragged through the gate into the consulate grounds and beaten by a group of men. The video appears to show local police entering the grounds of the consulate to break up the violence. Hong Kong Indigenous Defence Force alleges that Chinese consular staff were involved in the alleged beating, and that the protester was taken to hospital in stable condition. On Monday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said he was “not aware of the situation.” “Chinese Embassy and consulates in the UK have always abided by the laws of the countries where they are stationed,” he said in a regular news briefing. “We also hope that the British side, in accordance with the provisions of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, will facilitate the normal performance of the duties of the Chinese Embassy and consulates in the UK.” (https://edition.cnn.com/2022/10/17/uk/manchester-chinese-consulate-protesters-intl-hnk/index.html) CNN approached the Chinese Embassy in London for comment but did not receive an immediate response.

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