The eyes of the business world have largely been focused on the continuing trade war between the United States and China.
However, a much bigger threat may be taking shape in Hong Kong.
Since June, pro-democracy protests have engulfed the Asian city-state as citizens resist the control of the Chinese government.
The protests began in response to an extradition bill proposal that would have required Hong Kong to send citizens accused of crimes to China to face trial.
Rightfully, Hong Kong protesters are skeptical and realize that the Chinese would likely use this law as a weapon to punish political opponents.
On Monday, the situation got more dangerous.
Protestors shut down Hong Kong’s airport—one of the world’s largest centers for air travel.
Protestors Occupy Hong’s Airport
Hong Kong International Airport was forced to cancel all departures on Monday due to the presence of thousands of anti-government protestors. The demonstrators entered the airport to make a political statement following violent demonstrations the day before.
The BBC reported, “On Sunday afternoon, a peaceful rally in the city’s Victoria Park led to clashes when protesters moved out of the area and marched along a major road despite a police ban.
There were confrontations in several central districts and police used rubber bullets in an attempt to disperse the demonstrators.
In the bustling central Wan Chai district, petrol bombs and bricks were thrown at police, who responded by charging at protesters.
Several people, including a police officer, were injured in the clashes.”
The real danger has always been how China will react to the situation. The Chinese have been known to violently suppress pro-democracy protests—like the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989.
The BBC reported that “Chinese authorities have not yet physically intervened to quell the unrest, used their strongest language yet to condemn violent protesters.
“Hong Kong’s radical demonstrators have repeatedly used extremely dangerous tools to attack police officers, which already constitutes a serious violent crime, and also shows the first signs of terrorism emerging,” Yang Guang, a spokesman for the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office (HKMAO), said at a press briefing.
The ultimate danger to the region and global financial markets would be the intervention of Chinese troops into the protests. It could get bloody, and the media attention would do irreparable harm to the image of the Chinese Communist Government.
The trade war with the US would be small in comparison.
That is why this story is so important to follow, even though it has been underreported in the Western press.
I am not the only one who believes this.
CNBC’s Jim Cramer said, “I just don’t think the Chinese communists can avoid it anymore. The Chinese government is more worried about Hong Kong than they’re worried about trade. Because Hong Kong is something that’s very visible in Europe.
This is more serious than the trade talks. If you want to know what could tip you into a worldwide recession, it is just a shutdown of Hong Kong, a major financial hub in Asia.”
Clearly, this story is a long way from a conclusion.
For full coverage of this breaking story, stay tuned to FreedomWire.