LONDON: A man who was protesting outside a Chinese consulate in Britain said he was dragged inside the grounds by masked men, kicked and punched in an attack British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly described on Wednesday as “unacceptable”.
China has disputed the account of events which took place during a demonstration on Sunday against Chinese President Xi Jinping outside the consulate in Manchester, northern England, saying protesters had stormed its grounds.
It is the latest diplomatic spat between Britain and China, whose relationship has soured in recent years.
Footage on social media showed a man, wearing a black cap and with a ponytail, being hauled through a gate into the consular grounds, where he was assaulted by five men as he lay on the ground.
Bob Chan, who is aged in his 30s and originally from Hong Kong, said the attack started when masked men came out of the consulate to take away banners from peaceful protesters.
“I then found myself being dragged into the grounds of the consulate. I held on to the gate where I was kicked and punched,” he told reporters. “I could not hold on for long and was eventually pulled into the grounds of the consulate.” He said the attack only stopped when a police officer moved in to free him. He was left with bruising to his eye, head, neck and all over his back, he told reporters. “I am shocked and hurt by this unprovoked attack,” he said, adding he was concerned about his and his family’s safety.
Published in Dawn, October 20th, 2022