'Western-style democracy can only bring disaster', says party magazine
Blindly copying Western-style democracy can only bring disaster, an influential mainland Communist Party journal wrote in its latest edition, following more than a week of Hong Kong's pro-democracy protests.
Citing enduring violence and turmoil in countries like Afghanistan, Egypt, Iraq and Libya, which have tried to adopt such a system of government, the fortnightly magazine Qiushi said that Western democracy did not suit all countries.
"The West always brags that its own democracy is a 'universal value' and denies there is any other form of democracy," said Qiushi, which means "seeking truth", in the issue distributed over the weekend.
"Western democracy has innate internal flaws and certainly is not a 'universal value'; its blind copying can only lead to disaster," the magazine said.
The article made no mention of Hong Kong, which returned to mainland rule in 1997 having been a British colony, but the timing of its publication cannot have been a coincidence.
Over the past week tens of thousands of protesters have demanded that Hong Kong's Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying quit and that Beijing allow the city the right to vote for a leader of its choice in 2017 elections.
Facing separatist unrest in Tibet and Xinjiang , Beijing is fearful that calls for democracy in Hong Kong could spread to the mainland. The Communist Party leadership has dismissed the Hong Kong protests as illegal, but has so far left Leung's government to find a solution.
State media and officials have launched numerous attacks on Western-style democracy in the past, saying that the country's own system of "socialism with Chinese characteristics" is the best way to govern the world's most populous nation.