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Dueling demonstrators for and against Chinese President Xi square off near APEC conference in San Francisco

PIX Now Afternoon Edition 11-15-2023
PIX Now Afternoon Edition 11-15-2023 08:25

Two rabidly opposed groups, one supporting the visit of China's President Xi Jinping and the other against anything having to do with the Chinese government, squared off against each other in downtown San Francisco Wednesday.

The dueling protests were held in the area near the city's Moscone Center, site of the Asia-Pacific Economic Conference (APEC) 2023 Summit. Similar demonstrations were held by groups near the Filoli Historic House in Woodside where the Chinese leader held a high-stakes meeting with President Jose Biden.

APEC Summit Protests
Demonstrators march to protest the participation in the APEC Summit of Chinese President Xi Jinping Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2023, in San Francisco. Godofredo A. Vásquez / AP

There were physical confrontations between some of the protesters in the area of 3rd and Market Streets, with one group holding banners condemning China's ruling communist party and flying Taiwanese flags, and others holding pro-China placards and chanting "only one China."

The protests blocked streets and led the San Francisco Municipal Transporation Agency (SFMTA) to reroute some lines.

Earlier Wednesday, a large crowd gathered outside the Chinese Consulate at Laguna Street and Geary Boulevard to protest against the visit of the Chinese president to the APEC gathering. Some protesters held signs reading "Free Tibet" and "Tibet belongs to Tibetans."

Pro-China demonstrations have been held outside the St. Regis Hotel and the Hyatt Regency Hotel, both about a block away from each other on 3rd Street in the city's South of Market, where it's believed members of the Chinese delegations are staying. 

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