A photo of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying standing solemnly in front of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City has caused much amusement among netizens and inspired a series of memes.
Leung, who embarked on an official trip to Israel this week, paid a visit to the Wailing Wall — known formally as the Western Wall — on Wednesday along with his wife Regina.
Following the visit, Israel’s Consulate General in Hong Kong released a picture that showed Leung standing with his head bowed in front of the holy site and wearing a Jewish kippah or skullcap.
The image has now gone viral, with people passing various comments and creating memes on the Hong Kong leader, who had over the years rarely talked about his religious beliefs.
One netizen suggested that Leung may be remembering the victims of Beijing’s June 4, 1989 crackdown on student protesters.
Another sought to make fun of the Hong Kong leader’s pose before the Wailing Wall.
Sharing the picture with his friends on social media, the person added this caption: “Do not piss here, please!”
Those were just some of the many interesting messages that were passed around in online forums in the past 24 hours.
Many of the comments were snarky, but it seems unlikely that Leung is aware yet of the social media buzz he has generated.
The chief executive was busy meeting Israeli political and business leaders during the trip which began on Tuesday.
Heading a 30-member delegation, which included several industry leaders and academics, Leung was pitching Hong Kong’s advantages as a gateway to mainland China, while also seeking to enhance partnerships between Hong Kong and Israeli firms.
Besides meeting with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to exchange ideas on Tuesday, Leung visited technology enterprises and met members of the Israel-Asia Chamber of Commerce, according to information released by the Hong Kong government.
On Wednesday, Leung went to Tel Aviv to visit local innovation and technology enterprises, Tel Aviv University and a desalination plant in Sorek.
He will leave Israel today and head to London for a two-day official visit.
During the UK trip, Leung will witness the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on health cooperation between Hong Kong and Britain.
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