How could China intervene in the Hong Kong protests?

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As the Chinese government continues to strongly criticize the now months-long protests in Hong Kong, many wonder what Beijing will do to quiet the dissent.

According to CNN, Chinese military forces seen near the border city of Shenzhen are fueling speculation that China could use them to quell protests in Hong Kong.

But the BBC reports that under the city's Basic Law, direct military intervention is possible only if the Hong Kong government requests it. Instead, the South China Morning Post reports China is putting pressure on Hong Kong's police force to end the protests.

According to the BBC, China could also turn to political intervention, since Hong Kong's Legislative Council is only partly democratic, and largely pro-Beijing.

China is already showing its power by refusing to accept Chief Executive Carrie Lam's resignation and refusing to let her formally withdraw the controversial extradition bill.

Another possibility is for Beijing to target activists, as even without the extradition law, China is capable of detaining individual citizens.

According to the South China Morning Post, some Hong Kong residents have had China immigration officers at the border check photos and messages on their phones.

Despite fears of direct intervention, however, the BBC reports that Beijing's most effective tool may be economic. It can target the Hong Kong economy by redirecting investments to other Chinese cities, effectively making them more reliant on China.

RUNDOWN SHOWS:
1. Chinese military intervention in Hong Kong
2. Chinese political intervention in Hong Kong
3. China targeting individual activists, inspecting phones at border
4. China targeting Hong Kong economy

VOICEOVER (in English):
"According to CNN, Chinese military forces seen near the border city of Shenzhen are fueling speculation that China could use them to quell protests in Hong Kong."

"But the BBC reports that under the city's Basic Law, direct military intervention is possible only if the Hong Kong government requests it. Instead, the South China Morning Post reports China is putting pressure on Hong Kong's police force to end the protests."

"According to the BBC, China could also turn to political intervention, since Hong Kong's Legislative Council is only partly democratic, and largely pro-Beijing."

"China is already showing its power by refusing to accept Chief Executive Carrie Lam's resignation and refusing to let her formally withdraw the controversial extradition bill."

"Another possibility is for Beijing to target activists, as even without the extradition law, China is capable of detaining individual citizens."

"According to the South China Morning Post, some Hong Kong residents have had China immigration officers at the border check photos and messages on their phones."

"Despite fears of direct intervention, however, the BBC reports that Beijing's most effective tool may be economic. It can target the Hong Kong economy by redirecting investments to other Chinese cities, effectively making them more reliant on China."

SOURCES: BBC, CNN, South China Morning Post
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-49148762
https://edition.cnn.com/2019/08/14/asia/paramilitary-force-china-hong-kong-hrk-intl/index.html?no-st=1565837699
https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/politics/article/3022828/chinese-immigration-officials-inspect-hongkongers-phones
https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/politics/article/3022665/beijing-unlikely-intervene-hong-kong-police-under-pressure