Monday, January 11, 2021

#HONGKONG: Foreign Ministers From Across the Globe Condemn Arrest Of Hong Kong Democracy Advocates

[world politics news] 

Foreign ministers from the United States, Canada, Britain and Australia condemned last week’s arrest of over 50 democracy activists in Hong Kong in a joint statement on Sunday, calling on China to respect the freedom of the people on the island.

Hong Kong police made the arrests on Wednesday in dawn raids, the biggest crackdown since China imposed a security law in 2020, which opponents say is aimed at quashing dissent in the former British colony.

The statement, posted on the foreign ministry page of the UK government, and elsewhere, read, in part:

The National Security Law is a clear breach of the Sino-British Joint Declaration and undermines the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ framework. It has curtailed the rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong. It is clear that the National Security Law is being used to eliminate dissent and opposing political views.

We call on the Hong Kong and Chinese central authorities to respect the legally guaranteed rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong without fear of arrest and detention. It is crucial that the postponed Legislative Council elections in September proceed in a fair way that includes candidates representing a range."

The US State Department had already released a statement condemning the Chinese Communist Party and the arrests in Hong Kong.

"Arrests of more than 50 politicians and pro-democracy advocates by local authorities in Hong Kong is an outrage, and a reminder of the Chinese Communist Party’s contempt for its own people and the rule of law. Those arrested are guilty of nothing but exercising the democratic rights promised to them by treaty, and due to them through virtue of their humanity. They should be released immediately and unconditionally.

Pompeo said Washington may sanction those involved in the arrests and will send the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations to visit Taiwan, which is likely to be interpreted as a sign of US displeasure with the Beijing regime's involvement in the arrests.

Hong Kong ceased to be a colony of Britain in 1997, when an agreement was reached with mainland, Communist China for a "one nation, two systems" approach to the island city-state's status, in which it would keep its capitalist economy, independent legal system, and free elections until 2047, at which time it would be fully merged back into mainland China.

However, a new security law past last year by the Hong Kong parliament aligned its legal system with that of the mainland, and political dissidents, many of whom had opposed the security law and the closer ties with communist China, began to be arrested.

Pro-Communist party Hong Kong officials argue that increasingly violent demonstrations over the past few years necessitated the new security law, and many of the dissidents who were arrested were advocating outright Independence for the city-state, an allegation many deny.


World Politics News is dedicated to raising Americans' knowledge of political events, elections, and legislation throughout the world.

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