China

China media blame protesters for cancellation of Hong Kong talks

Reports say the number of protesters has dwindled Image copyright AFP
Image caption Reports say the number of protesters has dwindled in Hong Kong

Papers blame pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong for the cancellation of Friday's planned talks.

Hong Kong's student protest leaders have called on supporters to stage a major rally later on Friday after the government cancelled the talks.

The two sides were supposed to be meeting on Friday for the first time since pro-democracy protests erupted in late September.

But on Friday the government said it would be "impossible to have a constructive dialogue".

Last week thousands of demonstrators from both student groups and the wider pro-democracy Occupy Central movement paralysed parts of the city.

"The student representatives should bear the responsibility for the fact that the talks have been shelved as they changed their demands and plans before the talks. It shows they are not sincere about the dialogue," Gary Ching, a representative of anti-Occupy group Alliance for Peace and Democracy, tells the Global Times.

The daily quotes pro-establishment legislator Priscilla Leung Mei-fun as criticising the student body for "not being rational for challenging the framework set by the National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee".

Experts interviewed by the paper say "the dialogue will not resume until the students return the discussion to the legal framework".

"The students should raise their demands within the legal framework of the Basic Law and the decision set out by the NPC Standing Committee in late August," Tian Feilong, a legal expert at Beihang University in Beijing, tells the paper.

He adds that the "turnout for the rally would not return to its peak like 28 September when the protest began".

Meanwhile, state-run media outlets appear to be stepping up their efforts to "expose" foreign influence over the unrest.

An article in the People's Daily overseas edition states that a column in the Haiwai Net has been publishing articles "analysing the attitude and motive of the mastermind of Occupy Central". The paper and the website often share content with each other.

It adds that the Haiwai Net articles also "expose the ulterior motive of foreign forces using the problems of Hong Kong to control China's internal affairs".

On the same page of the paper, another article lashes out at US non-governmental organisations, media outlets and the government for "their enjoyment in supporting colour revolutions".

"On the surface, the US supports colour revolutions as they want to spread the 'universal values' of 'democracy, freedom and human rights'…but after careful examination, one could see that the US is only focussing on its strategic interests, hoping to bring down the disobedient regime that it does not like," the article argues.

Pollution alert

Elsewhere, media are giving coverage to the thick smog that has engulfed Beijing on Friday.

The city has raised its air pollution alert to second-highest orange level.

Beijing authorities have been trying to control pollution in the city in preparation for the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting next month.

According to the Beijing Times, authorities have declared 7 to 12 November as holiday for civil service bureaus, institutes and social organisations in Beijing to curb pollution.

The China Daily adds that to cut emissions, the city has decided to suspend work at construction sites, restrict the use of private vehicles and bar vehicles transporting construction waste and dangerous chemicals from the capital's roads during the period.

"Beijing will make every effort to prepare for the APEC meeting and we need to control air and water pollution," Guo Jinlong, Beijing's party chief, has been quoted as saying.

And finally, some Chinese papers are speculating on the whereabouts of North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un.

Mr Kim has been out of the public view for 37 days, his longest hiatus since he came to power in 2011.

His absence has prompted discussions over his health in Chinese papers.

An article by prominent political commentator Deng Yuwen points out that Mr Kim "may not be well" but that the illness "does not seem to be life-threatening".

"He could be taking this opportunity to start small reforms in areas of foreign policy and leadership arrangement to break the isolation of North Korea," he writes.

BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world. For more reports from BBC Monitoring, click here. You can follow BBC Monitoring on Twitter and Facebook.

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