Page 17

May 2017


News 17

FAR LEFT: Using Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa as a backdrop, Chinese journalists record a segment on President Xi’s visit. LEFT: Barriers with fencing were placed across the east side of the parking lot of Plaza del Mar to help control potential protesters.

isit and help secure the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa entrance. Workers later put fencing atop the concrete barriers. Photos by Joe Skipper/The Coastal Star disappear up the hotel’s circular driveway. Red shirts or yellow shirts, they had waited for hours. And he was gone in seconds. Friday, April 7 Yousra Hakkani left Boynton Beach for her job at the Ice Cream Club about 9:30 a.m. President Xi left the Eau Palm Beach for his summit meeting with President Trump at 10:32 a.m. He got to work before she did. “I was coming up South Dixie Highway from Gateway Boulevard when a sheriff’s roadblock turned me around,” Hakkani says. “So I turned into a neighborhood and got lost, then I came back down south to the Boynton Beach bridge and came up A1A and was stopped again by the Manalapan police for about 35 or 40 minutes.” When Hakkani finally reached Plaza Del Mar, the red and yellow T-shirts were still there, but not nearly as many, and

yesterday’s sense of anticipation was gone. Both greeters and protesters were hanging out now, eating ice cream. Ryan Xu, 25, a protester, ordered a milkshake. Vanilla, not green tea. “I flew in from Los Angeles on Wednesday,” he said. “Oh, yes, I paid my own way. Of course.” He seemed a little offended that anyone might think otherwise. In China, all he knew about Falun Gong was what the government told him. But after coming to the U.S. in 2011, he investigated. “The government said they are evil, but I found a completely different story,” he said. “The Communist Party always spreads bad rumors. In China, you are not allowed to have your own mind.” In 2016, Kilgour and his colleagues published an update to their 2006 study. The 789-page report estimated that perhaps as many as 1.5 million Chinese had died as a result of illicit organ

harvesting. “If I go back, I will be killed,” Xu said. And so he had paid his own way from California, to stand for hours in the hot sun, behind a barricade in Manalapan, pointing a sign at a car that was gone in a flash. Was it worth the trip? He seemed a little offended that anyone would ask. “It’s not about the results,” he said. “It’s about wanting people to know what’s going on in China.” Saturday, April 8 The red, white and blue porta-potties are gone this morning. The fencing is piled on a tractor-trailer blocking the northbound lane of A1A while workers in orange safety vests collect the steel poles that held it. The Secret Service is gone, the satellite TV trucks are gone, and the Farmer/ Artisan Market is open again, doing a lazy, Saturday morning business.

At the Ice Cream Club, the 3-gallon tub of green tea sold out at $4.25 a scoop, $6 a double, and chocolate almond has taken its place. Ryan Xu flew home to L.A., and President Trump played golf. Hosting the Chinese president had been “a great honor,” Trump tweeted. “Goodwill and friendship were formed,” but “only time will tell on trade.” In the end, Hurricane Xi wasn’t much more than a Cat 1 storm, if that. Five protesters were arrested Thursday for trying to jump in front of the motorcade, Sheriff Bradshaw reported. Everyone else was pretty orderly. On April 30, Congress agreed to a proposed budget that includes $61 million to reimburse local law enforcement agencies for expenses incurred while protecting Trump in New York and Florida. Bradshaw estimated the cost to taxpayers of Hurricane Xi had been about $280,000 in overtime pay.Ú

Profile for The Coastal Star

The Coastal Star May 2017  

Serving Coastal Delray Beach and north to Hypoluxo Island

The Coastal Star May 2017  

Serving Coastal Delray Beach and north to Hypoluxo Island