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Hong Kong protest song plays instead of Chinese anthem ahead of rugby clash, investigation ordered
Hong Kong Protest Song
Image; Pixabay

Hong Kong protest song plays instead of Chinese anthem ahead of rugby clash, investigation ordered

| @indiablooms | 14 Nov 2022, 06:33 pm

Hong Kong: Hong Kong authorities have ordered a probe after a song associated with the city’s pro-democracy movement was played instead of the Chinese national anthem ahead of a rugby match between Hong Kong and South Korea, media reports said on Monday.

In a statement, the city authority said: "The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government strongly deplores and opposes the playing of a song closely associated with violent protests and the 'independence' movement in 2019 as the National Anthem of the People’s Republic of China at the men’s final between Hong Kong and South Korea of the second leg of the Asian Rugby Seven Series held in Incheon, South Korea yesterday (November 13)."

The National Anthem is a symbol of our country. The organiser of the tournament has a duty to ensure that the National Anthem receives the respect it warranted,” a Government spokesman said.

He added,  “we have already written to the Hong Kong Rugby Union last evening demanding them to deal with this matter seriously, launch a full and in-depth investigation and submit a detailed report, and convey our strong objection to Asia Rugby, who is the organiser of the Series.”

Meanwhile, Asia Rugby 'deeply regretted' the incident.

"Asia Rugby and Korea Rugby Union would like to sincerely apologise to the Hong Kong Rugby Union, the Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and the Government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) for this incident," read the statement issued by Asia Rugby.

"The incident happened due to a simple human error from a junior member of the local organising committee, playing a song downloaded from the internet instead of the correct anthem," it said.

Hong Kong Rugby Union (HKRU) said in a statement: "The HKRU expressed its extreme dissatisfaction at this occurrence and has received a full explanation of the circumstances that led to this. Whilst we accept this was a case of human error it was nevertheless not acceptable. The HKRU has registered our deepest concern and regret over this incident."

Hong Kong, a former British colony, was handed over to China in 1997, and the Basic Law preserves its autonomy as a Special Administrative Region under the principle of “one country, two systems”.

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