BEIJING: China on Thursday (Jun 13) hit out at the European Union for making "irresponsible and erroneous" remarks about Hong Kong's controversial extradition bill, which sparked violent protests in the semi-autonomous city.
The city government is facing international pressure over the divisive legislation - which would allow extraditions to mainland China - as well as police use Wednesday of rubber bullets and tear gas to break up demonstrations.
"I have said many times that Hong Kong affairs are purely China's internal affairs. No country, organisation or individual has the right to intervene in them," foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said at a regular press briefing.
"China expresses its strong dissatisfaction and resolute opposition to the irresponsible and erroneous remarks made by the EU" on the proposed extradition law, he added.
"We request that the EU side view the proposed legal amendment objectively and with fairness, be cautious and stop interfering in Hong Kong affairs and China's internal affairs in any way."
The EU had called for the "fundamental right" of Hong Kongers to assemble and express themselves to be respected as it became the latest entity to add its voice to a growing chorus of criticism of the bill.
The bloc "shares many of the concerns raised by citizens of Hong Kong regarding the government's proposed extradition reforms", it said.
The EU said the proposed law had "potentially far-reaching consequences for Hong Kong and its people, for EU and foreign citizens, as well as for business confidence in Hong Kong".