Monday October 21 2019I3 10 ae CHINA DAILYIGLOBAL EDITION TOP NEWS MTR bears brunt of violence in HK Backlash Cynicism rampant in US media Weekend protests resultin frequent overtime for employees of subway operator which is likely to see revenue fall Hong Kong's pride the Mass Than- sit Railway sstem is struggling through the worst year in its four- decade history The system that has earned worldwide plaudits for its efficiency finds itself at the center of the city's current woes Today the MTR is grasping for strategies to weather the storm It has been called the biggest challenge faced by the corporation VTR Corp is struggling to strike a balance between safety and service deliverysaida senior MTR manager who did not want to be named There was no respite for the MTR this Sunday too Vandalism by black-clad protest- ers forced the closure of at least 17 stations by the MTR on three lines by 6 pm Rioters who broke into shops with known links to the Chinese From page 1 general public It's a dangerous tendency It denies agency to those who might have positive or even neutral impressions of the country and delegitimizes any dissenting voices without any engagement with those impressions on their merits We got a preview of this trend late last year when econ- omist Jeffrey Sachs published a piece critical of the US position on Chinese technology compa- ny Huawei Sachs was up to that point a darling of the media His market-based answers to the problem of global poverty were just the kind of tepid nonsolutions that neoliberal NGOS and think tanks love Despite this reputa- tion journalists academics and others took turns leveling wilder and wilder accusations including RC AMA mainland in the central Kowloon area set fires at some stations van- dalized a district councilor's office and broke traffic lights paralyzing traffic Despite some subway stations hav- ing been closed radicals tore down the MTR signs and smashed the glass facade at the entrance Protest- ers set fire to the entrance of the Mong Kok station by tossing gaso- line bombs into it against Sachs bribery by the Chinese govern- ment - effectively excommu- nicating him from the ranks of people to be taken seriously Sachs left social media shortly thereafter mission accom- plished Over the past two months the sub- way system has been attacked by vio- lent mobs almost every week The network had managed to complete repairs and clean up in time for the resumption of services at 6 am The senior manager recalled that at 4 am on Oct 5 when rioters ended their rampage hours after the city's anti-mask law came into effect staff members at different stations were called out to inspect the stations and make arrangements for repairs The city continued to reel amid the city- wide chaos that saw hundreds of Fire rages at an exit of the Hong Kong subway's Central Station after radical protesters went on an arson spree in September CHINA DAILY James shouldn't buckle under and hurl abuse at staff members for obstructing the demonstrations Nothing like this has ever hap- pened before the manager said The person recalled transportation in the city becoming obstructed in 2005 when South Korean farmers sparked riots surrounding the Sixth Ministe- rial Conference of the World Trade Organization Back then the rioters were condemned by the public in general and staff members had little difficulty maintaining order Stealing rides poses a serious con- cern for the city's public transporta- tion system the staff member said The individual noted that the MTR's high efficiency is based on mutual trust and a high degree of self-disci- pline among Hong Kong people A sharp drop in MTR's revenue is likely to result from decreased pas- senger traffic during recent months MTR reported a decline of 75 per- cent year-on-year in passenger traffic in August The Airport Express that links Hong Kong International Airport and the city's principal urban areas saw a drop of 10 percent in passenger traffic presumably due to direct dis- ruptions of the airport by protesters on Aug 12 and 13 The Hong Kong West Kowloon high-speed rail station constructed by MTR and commissioned late last year carried 114 million passengers in August down nearly 30 percent from July Ridership has been affected by a 40 percent drop in tourist arrivals in the city over the past month alone In the meantime the people of Hong Kong are cutting back on shopping and leisure dining because of fre- quent disruptions caused by pro- tests including violent clashes across the city pressure from jaded media They cheer for him when he wins Stealing rides hard to stop Facilities vandalized by violent mobs at MTR stations Protesters smashed turnstiles and ticketing machines wrecked surveil- lance cameras The temporary replacement was a brainchild of the engineering team said the manager and firefighting equipment at the stations The MTR employees were harassed and intim- idated For the past two months working overtime and sometimes overnight has been the norm for MTR employ- ees Most are accustomed to working in shifts during the 18 hours of opera- tions Now once a subway station becomes damaged during protests which frequently occurred during weekends some employees remain on duty to clean up and repair dama- ges before the service begins again at 6 am championships but want him to keep Costing up to HK$40 million The city felt another shock on Sept 8 when protesters started a fire at an exit of Central Station on Hong Kong Island Before long arson became a standard tactic among rioting pro- testers When stations were closed protesters smashed windows at the exits and tossed gasoline bombs inside his mouth shut off shops and banks vandalized in addi- tion to many subway stations The first three stations the manag- er inspected had sustained fire dam- age smashed turnstiles and ticket vending machines and surfaces defaced by graffiti The damage was unprecedented and the manager had to report that repairs could not be completed early in the morning On Oct 5 however the MTR was down for the count All lines and sta- tions had to be closed all day than 80 of 93 stations had been dam- aged It wasn't until Oct 11 that the full system was back in operation Tseung Kwan O Station the last to finish repairs provided only limited services the court But that's Damaged facilities include not his style Mobs were seen jumping over turnstiles without paying to avoid being identified if 1200 turnstiles 800 ticketing machines Cynicism runs rampant in the US government and in the media To them it would be impossible to think or say any thing positive about a place they've determined in their vast wisdom is a nightmarish dystopia It's this same attitu that treats the Chinese gover ment's policies to maximize employment and eradicate poverty as tools to ensure regime loyalty - as if steady employment and a higher quality of life aren't unambi ous good things a governme pursues for their own sake James shouldn't buckle 900 CCTV Once a fixture at a subway station or a train is damaged staff members have to inspect all facilities looking out for damage to avoid mishaps The uncertainties arising from attacks result in tons of work the they use their subway cards These efforts have ensured that most MTR services are restored in time for about 5 million passengers who use the network each day Some services had to make way For example the MTR employees who specialize in providing services to the disabled were temporarily seconded to other jobs Some barrier-free facilities that have been damaged still await repairs Protesters smashed the only lift at Yau Ma Tei Station It is located adja- cent to Kwong Wah Hospital a major public hospital in southern Kowloon As a result elderly patients of the hospital as well as the disabled and passengers with heavy luggage or prams are forced to take the stairs Every single part has its this vast and complex system the manager said Each missing ele- ment could create a trail of prob- cameras 50 escalators more manager said Due to constant damage to railway facilities a dwindling number of spare parts for repairs made the problem increasingly acute accord- ing to Adi Lau Tin-shing operations Overtime shifts new 'norm' for MTR staff Sharp drop in MTR's revenue likely MTR passenger traffic has seen a decline of 75% year-on-year in August director of MTR Once a train or By the time the station reopened only four of 26 turnstiles one of five ticket machines and four of seven escalators were operational accord- ing to the MTR's chief of operations Sammy Wong Kwan-wai Some glass doors on platforms that had been smashed replaced with aluminum boards The Various facilities including 1200 turnstiles 800 ticketing machines 900 closed circuit television camer- as and 50 escalators have been dam- aged causing costs of up to HK$40 million $51 million Some spare parts have been exhausted and replacement parts have had to be ordered overseas They will not arrive in Hong Kong until November said Lau Before that the company mobi- lized the employees to deal with the crisis For example staff members were added to help recharge rail cards or sell tickets before the ticket- subway station fixture is damaged staff members have to inspect all facilities looking out for damage to avoid mishaps under pressure from jaded media They cheer for him when he wins championsh but want him to keep his mouth shut off the court The Hong Kong West Kowloon high-speed rail carried 114 million passengers in August down nearly 30% from July purpose in Before damage repair staff members are mobilized to deal with the crisis were rail operator also cleared debris which had been thrown onto the rail tracks amid the rampage On Aug 5 the MTR train services were paralyzed when anti-govern- ment protesters launched a nonco- operation protesters pressed emergency but- tons on the carriages and blocked train doors from closing during rush hour Eight lines had to suspend ser- vices that's not his style Wheth denouncing police brutali encouraging a more nuan view of a heated political tion James has never bee afraid to challenge conve al wisdom He shouldn't start now lems The pressure of working overtime seems a small inconvenience when considered alongside the difficulties of enforcing regulations while vio- lent protesters are intent on creating disruption the manager said It never was a mission impossi- ble for the MTR staff members to CHINA DAILY Mobs were seen jumping over turn- stiles without paying to avoid being identified if they use their transpor- tation cards movement Masked ing machines were fixed At damaged turnstiles MTR work- ers hold sensors for passengers to tap their transport cards while comput- er screens show the balance of the cards The MTR employees complained that when they tried to apprehend fare jumpers a crowd would form The author is awriter stop people from stealing rides until masses of protesters did so recently at China Daily CHINA DAILY Disputes erupted at some stations Battle of fittest Brexit Johnson had much at stake From page 1 In both deals UK citizens living in EU countries and EU citizens living in the UK would keep their residen- cy rights and their social security Ahead of the vote it was clear the numbers would be tight Johnson put his efforts into win- ning the support of the 23 maverick Conservative Party members of Par- liament he had expelled for voting against him and into persuading opposition party MPs to support him especially those from areas where the public wants an EU exit Ahead of the vote Labour Party MP Ronnie Campbell summed up why some opposition lawmakers were planning to support the gov- ernment when he told the BBC pro- gram Newsnight I think this country's just fed up with the way Parliament's run this for the last three years Theresa May The main difference between them was the way in which Johnson aimed to avoid a post- entitlements Brexit hard border between North- In Saturday's vote the stakes were ern Ireland and the Republic of high for Johnson He knew that los- Ireland He favored introducing ing would mean having to abide by customs checks away from the bor- der while May's proposal which Parliament rejected three times called for Northern Ireland to effec- tively remain in the EU until a trade ing an extension beyond the Oct 31 deal could be signed - the so-called Irish backstop - which was contro- versial because it meant different parts of the UK would be treated differently Johnson's deal like May's called for the UK to be free to strike trade deals with other countries and for a transitional period during which all of the EU rules would be followed demanding the dissolution of Par- through the end of December 2020 the Benn Act which requires John- son to ask the EU for an extension to the Article 50 negotiating period and submit a letter to the EU seek- deadline until the end of January This would allow time for more talks something Johnson had previ- ously said he would rather be dead in a ditch than do The BBC's political editor Laura Kuenssberg had predicted that Johnson were he to lose would try to avoid asking for an extension by Xinhua contributed to this story A Moroccan athlete competes in the 2019 Yichun International Agricultural Fitness Invita Competition in Yichun Jiangxi province on Saturday Teams from Pakistan Russia Chin countries participated in the game LIU JIGANGXINHUA Contact the writers at liament and a general election earle@mailchinadailyukcom Newspaper China Daily from today about Hong Kong protests and statement from LeBron James Meme

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