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Chinese media deny police plans to intervene at Hong Kong border

By
Elizabeth Shim
Chinese state media is rejecting reports Beijing could intervene as Hong Kong's protests grow in scale and local police are becoming increasingly confrontational at rallies. File Photo by Jerome Favre/EPA-EFE
Chinese state media is rejecting reports Beijing could intervene as Hong Kong's protests grow in scale and local police are becoming increasingly confrontational at rallies. File Photo by Jerome Favre/EPA-EFE

July 31 (UPI) -- China is denying claims its troops amassed near Hong Kong are signs of a plan to intervene in the ongoing protests in the special administrative region.

State-owned Xinhua news agency reported Wednesday Chinese troops are gathering near Hong Kong, but the maneuver comes ahead of the 70th anniversary of the founding of People's Republic of China.

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Armed personnel are converging near Hong Kong, in Guangdong Province, to take part in training related to anniversary celebrations, Xinhua said.

China's national anniversary will be observed on Oct. 1, when the Chinese Communist Party took power and toppled the Nationalist government at the time.

The training includes 190,000 police who had gathered in Foshan, Guangdong Province, by Tuesday.

The police took part in exercises involving helicopters and armored vehicles, Xinhua stated.

Xinhua's report comes after Bloomberg reported the White House is monitoring Chinese forces along Hong Kong's border.

Bloomberg quoted an anonymous Trump administration official, who said that there were clear signs armed police were converging at the border.

China has mostly stayed uninvolved in the protests, permitting instead Hong Kong's authorities, including its police, to confront protesters.

Protesters have been violently attacked in recent weeks.

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The most recent attack involved fireworks launched by unidentified assailants, the BBC reported Wednesday.

Footage uploaded to social media shows people running for cover as fireworks are launched in their direction, the report said.

At least 10 people may have been hurt as a result of the attacks.

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