Hong Kong Politics

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Hong Kong activist Nathan Law receives asylum in Great Britain
Hong Kong activist Nathan Law receives asylum in Great Britain
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter / Nathan Law

The prominent activist Nathan Law left the country nine months ago because he faces political persecution in Hong Kong, Now he has been granted political asylum in Britain.

The 27-year-old former opposition MP reported on Twitter that his application had been approved after four months of consideration. "The fact that I am being sought under the National Security Act shows that I face severe political persecution and am unlikely to be able to return to Hong Kong without risk."

Regional News • Asia • China
China's leadership adopts electoral reform for Hong Kong
China's leadership adopts electoral reform for Hong Kong
Credit: unsplash.com / Ruslan Bardash

China continues to expand its influence over Hong Kong. An electoral law reform gives Beijing control over candidate selection in the Special Administrative Region's parliamentary elections, allowing it to exclude candidates who are not considered loyal.

President Xi Jinping ordered the publication of the electoral law change on Tuesday, the Chinese state news agency Xinhua reported. The changes to the Special Administrative Region's electoral system were approved by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, Tam Yiu-chung, Hong Kong's sole delegate, told the AFP news agency.

China's People's Congress had launched the amendment to the Special Administrative Region's electoral law in mid-March. It is intended to ensure that Hong Kong can only be run by "patriots". In this way, Beijing wants to gain control over the selection of candidates. Among other things, the Chinese leadership is to be given veto rights to be able to exclude certain candidates.

Regional News • Asia • China
Electoral reform: China's People's Congress votes to change Hong Kong's electoral law
Hong Kong skyline
Hong Kong skyline Credit: Mark Huguet

According to the decision of the People's Congress, which was published by the state news agency Xinhua, the committee to elect the Hong Kong chief executive should be enlarged from 1,200 to 1,500 members. "This is the latest move by Beijing to erode space for democratic debate in Hong Kong, contrary to promises made by China," British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said, according to a statement. Following the enactment of the controversial security law last year, the election reform is another blow to Hong Kong's liberal system.

Regional News • Asia
Hong Kong district councilors will be required to swear allegiance to government or face election ban
Hong Kong district councilors will be required to swear allegiance to government or face election ban
Credit: 立場新聞, Copyrighted free use, via Wikimedia Commons

The Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Erick Tsang announced on Tuesday that Hong Kong will introduce new requirements for district councilors to take an oath swearing to uphold the Basic Law and pledge allegiance to the government. Behaviours that would be deemed incompliant include committing acts that endanger national security, as well as any refusal to recognise China's sovereignty over Hong Kong.

Regional News • Asia
Hong Kong democracy movement media entrepreneur Lai detained until trial

Shortly after the verdict against Joshua Wong and two of his comrades-in-arms the media entrepreneur Jimmy Lai, another prominent supporter of the Hong Kong democracy movement has been sent to prison. He is accused of fraud and is now expected to remain in detention pending a planned court hearing in April.

Regional News • Asia
Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong sentenced to prison
Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong sentenced to prison
Credit: Honcques Laus / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons CC0 Waiver)

Joshua Wong has been sentenced to thirteen and a half months in prison, and the co-defendants Agnes Chow and Ivan Lam have been sentenced to ten and seven months in prison, respectively. This was decided by a court in Hong Kong's Kowloon district. The prosecution had accused the three of having participated in an unauthorized demonstration last year against the growing influence of the Chinese leadership in Hong Kong.

Regional News • Asia
Joshua Wong faces jail after guilty plea over pro-democracy activism in Hong Kong
Joshua Wong faces jail after guilty plea over pro-democracy activism in Hong Kong
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

During a trial facing charges relating to pro-democracy protests outside Hong Kong police stations the three activists Joshua Wong, Agnes Chow, and Ivan Lam have pleaded guilty to the charges.

According to local media reports, Joshua Wong pleaded guilty to organizing and inciting the unauthorized assemble but not participation due to missing evidence by the prosecution. He could face up to five years in prison if convicted under the charges he pleaded guilty for.

Sentencing is expected for next week.

Regional News • Asia
United Kingdom announces that China has breached Hong Kong treaty
United Kingdom announces that China has breached Hong Kong treaty
Credit: Foreign and Commwealth Office / via Wikimedia Commons (Open Government Licence v3.0)

By imposing new rules to disqualify elected legislators Hong Kong, China has broken the biliteral treaty according to the United Kingdom.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has stated that "Beijing’s imposition of new rules to disqualify elected legislators in Hong Kong constitutes a clear breach of the legally binding Sino-British Joint Declaration". The United Kingdom is now considering sanctions against officials.

Regional News • Asia • China
China warns UK not to offer citizenship to Hong Kong residents
Hong Kong
Hong Kong Credit: eGuide Travel

China has told Britain to "immediately correct its mistakes" after the UK reaffirmed its plan to offer a route to British citizenship to almost three million people living there.