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To honor those lost on Sept. 11, protesters in Hong Kong cancel planned demonstrations

The protesters have voiced pro-American sentiment in the past

VIVEK PRAKASH/AFP/Getty Images

Pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong have announced that they are suspending protests on Sept. 11 to honor the Americans who died that day.

What protests?

Since Hong Kong was returned to China by the United Kingdom in 1997, it has seen some of its freedoms slowly chipped away. China had promised to utilize a "one country, two systems" model of governance for Hong Kong for at least the first 50 years, in order to ease the transition, but has periodically put laws in place to bring Hong Kong more into line with Chinese rule.

The protests began in early August when the Chinese-backed government of Hong Kong tried to pass a bill that would allow citizens of Hong Kong to be extradited to the mainland. Although the government has since backed off of this plan, the protests have continued in an attempt to convince the government to agree to more democratic reforms.

The Chinese government claimed that the protesters were planning an attack

In a Facebook post on Sept. 9, the Chinese propaganda paper China Daily had accused the protesters, whom it labeled "anti-government fanatics," of "planning massive terror attacks, including blowing up gas pipes, in Hong Kong on September 11."

As evidence, the paper cited a short message in Chinese on the app Telegram.

The Washington Post publishes an insert from the China Daily in the print edition of its newspaper regularly.

What happened now?

"In solidarity against terrorism, all forms of protest in Hong Kong will be suspended on Sept. 11, apart from potential singing and chanting," the protesters said in a statement, according to The Hill.

The protesters have shown pro-American sentiment in the past, with some of them even waving American flags and singing the U.S. national anthem, in an attempt to gain American support.

One last thing…
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