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Washington D.C.—House Foreign Affairs Committee Lead Republican Michael McCaul (R-TX) and Chairman Eliot Engel (D-NY) issued the following statement about China’s threats of military intervention against protesters in Hong Kong:

“This Saturday marks the 5th anniversary of Beijing’s decision to severely limit universal suffrage in Hong Kong, sparking the 2014 Umbrella Movement protests.

“Beijing’s continued failure to abide by its obligations under the Joint Declaration has undermined the autonomy of Hong Kong, exacerbated existing grievances, and eroded the safety, stability, and prosperity of the city.

“In recent weeks, we’ve seen admirable resolve among Hong Kongers to express their concerns regarding their future. A broad spectrum of Hong Kongers have chosen to put their personal safety and freedom at risk to stand up for their rights because Beijing has denied them a political voice.

“Beijing’s refusal to give Hong Kong Authorities the latitude to respond to Hong Kongers’ concerns has exacerbated tensions. We call upon China’s leadership to reconsider this decision. We urge the Hong Kong Authorities to immediately release those who have been detained on politically motivated charges and act swiftly to stop the use of excessive force against protestors. Compromise will be necessary to defuse tensions and restore peace to this great city.

“We urge authorities to exercise restraint and both sides to refrain from violence and seek a peaceful accommodation that addresses the legitimate concerns of the people of Hong Kong. 30 years after the mass murder at Tiananmen Square, the Chinese Communist Party has an obligation to their people and the world to choose a peaceful path forward.”