Cathay Pacific fired two airport employees and suspended a pilot for conduct linked to anti-government protests as China stepped up its efforts to pull Hong Kong business into line over the increasingly angry demonstrations.

Hong Kong's flagship carrier said at the weekend it would comply with a directive from China's aviation authority that included an order to take workers off flights to China if they had participated in illegal demonstrations that have gone on for 10 weeks.

The regulator's move was the starkest sign yet of Beijing's growing readiness to make high-profile businesses choose between incurring the wrath of either

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