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EU Council chief urged to challenge Xi Jinping on protests during visit – follow live

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China Covid protests explained: Why are people demonstrating

President of the European Council Charles Michel, who is set to visit China amid a wave of major protests there against “zero-Covid” policies, is being urged to raise the issue with Xi Jinping or to cancel his visit.

The European Council chief was set to hold talks with Mr Xi during his visit starting 1 December. The trip is seen as strategically important for increasing ties between Europe and China.

However, officials, politicians and EU diplomats have raised concerns about the timing of the visit and have asked Mr Michel to either raise the issue of the crackdown against protesters or cancel his trip.

“He should use the occasion to raise our concerns regarding several issues,” Reinhard Bütikofer, chair of the European Parliament’s delegation for relations with China, told Politico.

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“If there is a crackdown of the recent protest movement, the EU is willing to raise that in international institutions and to consider new sanctions.”

China has increased police presence on the streets in several cities after the protests, as demonstrations in solidarity took place in cities around the world.

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Welcome to The Independent’s rolling coverage of the anti-lockdown protests in China. Stay tuned for the latest!

Stuti Mishra29 November 2022 03:53

Source: Independent

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