Chinese President Xi Jinping swore in Hong Kong's new leader on Saturday with a stark warning that Beijing will not tolerate any challenge to its authority in the divided city as it marked the 20th anniversary of its return from Britain to China. Scarlett Cvitanovich reports.
China's president has fired a stark warning to Hong Kong against challenging Beijing's authority. Xi Jinping swore in the city's new leader on Saturday (July 1) in a ceremony that coincided with the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong's handover from British to Chinese rule. His visit comes in a time of heightened social and political tensions in the divided city. And Xi used the opportunity to warn Hong Kong to toe the line (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) CHINA'S PRESIDENT, XI JINPING, SAYING: "Any attempt to endanger China's sovereignty and security, challenge the power of the central government and the authority of the basic law of the Hong Kong special administrative region, or use Hong Kong to carry out infiltration and sabotage activities against the mainland is an act that crosses the red line, and is absolutely impermissible." Many residents resent what they see as Beijing's interference in their strive for democracy. And more recently, some protesters have called for independence. Pro-democracy and pro-Beijing groups clashed throughout Saturday. Where despite a heavy police presence, scuffles still broke out between the two sides. Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets later in the day in an annual march seeking to retake the city's quote "real and fully fledged democracy." Carrie Lam - Hong Kong's first female leader - was selected for the role in March. When she was backed by a 12-hundred strong "election committee" stacked with pro-China and pro-establishment loyalists.