Patten abused

An official Chinese newspaper has accused Hong Kong's Governor, Chris Patten, of strutting like a whore in front of US President Bill Clinton during his visit to Washington to argue for Chinese trade privileges, Reuter reports from Peking. Borrowing an old Chinese insult, the Shenzhen Special Zone Daily compared Mr Patten to 'a prostitute who expects a monument to her chastity'.

China has all along accused Mr Patten of hypocrisy in his visit to Washington this month to meet Mr Clinton and congressional leaders to argue for extension of the Most Favoured Nation trading status that covers billions of dollars of Chinese exports. Hong Kong would suffer most if Sino-American trade ties soured. Peking says Mr Patten's hidden agenda was to get US support for his plan to boost democracy in Hong Kong.