|China's Ambassador to France Lu Shaye poses during a photo session in Paris, on Sept. 10, 2019. AFP-Yonhap|
By Stuart Lau
Lu Shaye, who is known for his hardline remarks while he was ambassador to Canada, expressed "deep contempt" for Brussels, saying it was "glorifying" the use of violence by Hong Kong protesters, whose anti-government demonstrations will soon be entering into the fifth month.
He also said France should show empathy for the Hong Kong police just as Beijing empathised with the French police's handling of violent protesters ― an apparent reference to the months-long "yellow vest" demonstrations.
Lu ― who has previously upset the Canadian government for attributing its detention of Huawei Technologies' top executive Meng Wanzhou to "white supremacy" ― made his latest remarks a month ahead of French President Emmanuel Macron's expected visit to China.
"We express our strong dissatisfaction and our deep contempt for the hypocrisy of the EU declaration as well as the dark intentions of some vis-a-vis China," Lu wrote in a statement published on Twitter.
|French President Emmanuel Macron attends the inauguration of 'Le Maillon' theater in Strasbourg, France, October 1, 2019. Reuters-Yonhap|
"The European Union has publicly glorified the rioters' abuses," he said, asking if it was the European leaders' wish to see the police force in Hong Kong collapse "under the blows of these odious attacks".
Francois Godement, senior adviser for Asia at the Paris-based Institut Montaigne think tank, called it a "brutal statement".
It "ignores totally that the EU statements have already come out against violence, pointed to the risk of escalation ― and called for moderation," he wrote.
Lu was criticising the October 2 statement made by Federica Mogherini, the EU's foreign affairs chief, in which she said that fundamental freedoms, including the right of assembly of Hong Kong people, must continue to be upheld and the possibility to hold peaceful demonstrations must be ensured.
The South China Morning Post has previously reported that Macron will visit China next month to focus on climate change cooperation and trade promotion in talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, according to a source briefed on the Elysee Palace's discussions.