Han Yong Hong

Han Yong Hong

Associate Editor, Zaobao; Editor, Zaobao.com

Yong Hong is an associate editor of Zaobao and the editor of Zaobao.com. She joined Lianhe Zaobao as a journalist in 2000, covering theatre, music and visual arts. In 2005, she was assigned to the Beijing bureau as a correspondent, and became the chief correspondent in 2009. She received the Business China Young Achiever Award in 2011, making her the second recipient of this award, and the first journalist to receive this recognition.

China's President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) leaders' summit in Samarkand on 15 September 2022. (Alexandr Demyanchuk/AFP)

Xi-Putin meeting in Uzbekistan: China pulling back from Russia

China seems to be pulling back while Russia wants to take a step forward, as seen from the Xi-Putin parlay at their meeting in Uzbekistan. But the delicate dance is not only at the surface level of the Ukraine war, but China’s deeper strategic goals in Central Asia, where Russia considers itself a dominant power.
This handout photo taken and released by Taiwan’s Presidential Office on 8 September 2022 shows Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen (7th left) posing for a photo with a US congressional delegation led by US Representative Stephanie Murphy (6th from left) and other officials at the Presidential Office in Taipei. (Handout/Taiwan Presidential Office/AFP)

Effect of US politicians' frequent visits to Taiwan cannot be underestimated

Following US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, visits by other US politicians have come fast and furious, with the latest a delegation led by Democrat Stephanie Murphy. But while these visits show US support for Taiwan, they also sometimes come with an agenda. How will Taiwan navigate such a situation amid pressure from Beijing?
An advertisement promoting Covid-19 vaccination is seen in Beijing, China, on 30 August 2022. (Bloomberg)

When will China end its zero-Covid policy and open up its borders?

With the impending 20th Party Congress in less than two months, Chinese authorities are stepping up their efforts to control the spread of Covid-19, with fresh lockdowns in China’s megacities over the past few days. Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong notes that despite calls to stabilise the economy, anti-epidemic efforts seem to take precedence, and are not likely to be eased even after the congress.
Commuters ride bicycles along a street at the central business district in Beijing, China, on 8 July 2022. (Wang Zhao/AFP)

Huawei founder: Global economic outlook will be grim for next few years

In a recent internal memo, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei did not beat around the bush in warning of the dire global economic situation. Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong notes that Ren is merely being candid about what has already been iterated by heads of states and economic experts. Amid a war in Europe, supply chain disruptions, geopolitical tensions and domestic economic troubles, can China hope for a recovery in the foreseeable future?
Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks at a meeting commemorating the 110th anniversary of Xinhai Revolution at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, 9 October 2021. (Carlos Garcia Rawlins/File Photo/Reuters)

The Taiwan Strait crisis has strengthened Xi Jinping’s position

With the 20th Party Congress expected to commence in the next two months, Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong says that Chinese President Xi Jinping’s position has been strengthened following the US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s historic visit to Taiwan. China has shown its trade and military prowess in the Taiwan Strait with its recent countermeasures, and all eyes will be on whether a timeline for armed reunification will be set during the congress.
A Navy Force helicopter under the Eastern Theater Command of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) takes part in military exercises in the waters around Taiwan, at an undisclosed location 8 August 2022 in this handout picture released on 9 August 2022. (Eastern Theater Command/Handout via Reuters)

Is there still hope for peaceful reunification in the Taiwan Strait?

Following US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, the PLA launched a series of military exercises surrounding Taiwan, in a show of “locking in” the island. When the exercises ended, Beijing released a white paper stating that “peaceful reunification” is the “first choice” for the Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese government. But what are the other “choices”? Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong tells us more.
US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi waves with other members of the delegation as they board a plane before leaving Taipei Songshan Airport, in Taipei, Taiwan, 3 August 2022. (Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Handout via Reuters)

Did Beijing just score a victory without battle with Pelosi's Taiwan visit?

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited and left Taiwan safely. While she spent 19 hours in Taiwan with seemingly little consequences to herself and the US for now, it is Taiwan that has to bear the brunt of Beijing’s wrath. Did Pelosi's visit accomplish anything? In the case of mainland China, its people are expectedly mad about Beijing's mild actions towards the US, but the current situation could be to Beijing's advantage.
This combination of file pictures created on 8 June 2021 shows US President Joe Biden (left) and Chinese President Xi Jinping. (Mandel Ngan and Anthony Wallace/AFP)

China and the US not ready for showdown over Taiwan

During their phone call on 28 July, US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping made their positions clear on Taiwan and asked their staff to explore an in-person meeting. The verdict is still out, but it is unlikely that either of them will let US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s surprise move checkmate US-China relations into a direct military conflict they both do not want.
US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi holds her weekly press conference at the US Capitol on 21 July 2022 in Washington, DC. (Nathan Howard/Getty Images/AFP)

Will Pelosi visit Taiwan this time?

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has again announced plans to visit Taiwan, this time in August. Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden has also said that he will very likely speak to Chinese President Xi Jinping in the next ten days. Are these incidents related and what action is mainland China likely to take? Zaobao’s associate editor Han Yong Hong examines the issue.