英文網媒Hong Kong Free Press創辦人葛朗迪（Tom Grundy）在Twitter分享帖文，批評《中國日報》此舉已正式「失去理智」。資深時事評論員劉銳紹則質疑訊息出處，官方製造的假消息往往令人啼笑皆非，「宣傳技巧相當低」，只會令人懷疑官方而非抗爭者。
China Daily, a Chinese state-run newspaper, faced extensive criticisms after it claimed in a Facebook post that Hong Kong protesters were planning mass terrorist attacks on September 11.
The Hong Kong edition of China Daily said “anti-government fanatics” were planning the attacks, illustrating the post with a photograph of the al-Qaeda attack on the World Trade Centre in New York.
When asked if the claim was factually accurate and whether it was ethical to publish it, the state-run outlet sent a screenshot – which it said came from a channel on the encrypted messaging app Telegram – in which a post said protesters should start killing people if their demands were not met.
Tom Grundy, Founder of Hong Kong Free Press twitted that “China’s state media are officially losing their minds”. The claim was incredulous to netizens, as they flooded the post with comments, accusing China Daily of making up a story to smear the protesters and stoke fear among pro-government faction.
In the evening, the Hong Kong protesters issued a statement to clarify the rumours, saying that the protesters in the past 3 months has never made unreasonable acts of force against other innocent or unrelated citizens. After the incidents of 21 July and 31 August, the protesters are aligned with the victims and will never use indiscriminate attacks, terrorist attacks and other means to rebel against the government.
They also said that if there are rumors alleging indiscriminate attacks, it is a smear or planned script by the Hong Kong government and its allies as a vicious means of sabotage and divisive act. The Hong Kong protesters will not be stupid enough to sacrifice Hong Kong and international support in the past 3 months, and condemned all terrorist attacks and attack not directed against the Hong Kong establishment.