Hong Kong protests

Hong Kong protests

The Hong Kong protests began in 2019 in opposition to a proposed extradition law that would have allowed the transfer of fugitives to mainland China, among other jurisdictions. The demonstrations esca

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Welcoming message for Hong Kong refugees adds to China’s tensions with US, Canada
The potential acceptance of Hong Kong pro-democracy activists as political refugees led to a war of words between Beijing and governments in countries including the United States and Canada.  A number of developed countries have pledged to open their doors to Hongkongers, but the Chinese government has attacked them for what it describes as foreign interference in its domestic affairs.  Some of those who took part in the anti-government protests in Hong Kong have fled the city or are trying to leave over fears that they could face prosecution.  Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau last week responded to a veiled threat made by a Chinese diplomat after US National Security Advisor Robert O’
Greta Thunberg declares support for ‘Hong Kong 12’
Greta Thunberg, the high-profile global environmental activist, has waded into sensitive Chinese politics by demanding the release of 12 Hong Kong fugitives detained in mainland China after being arrested at sea while fleeing to Taiwan.  The Swedish environmentalist shared on Twitter a picture of her holding a whiteboard bearing the message “#SAVE12HKYOUTHS” in response to a direct appeal to back the cause from Joshua Wong Chi-fung, the poster boy of Hong Kong’s protest movement. She also wrote, “12 is more than just a number” and called on three other environmental activists to join her in the cause. The arrest of 12 Hong Kong activists in August has made international headlines and turned
Hong Kong security law: fleeing activists evoke sea escapes of the past
The recent capture at sea of 17 young Hong Kong activists as they attempted to escape to Taiwan was an all-too-familiar tale for older Hongkongers who risked life and limb in perilous journeys into or out of the city by water, but for three men, the story was deeply personal. Memories of their own brushes with danger came flooding back for Cai Chongguo, Lew Mon-hung and Tsang Kin-shing when news emerged on Wednesday that the mainland Chinese coastguard had arrested 12 local activists allegedly en route to Taiwan. Wednesday’s arrests came just days before Taiwanese media reported that five other Hong Kong activists had been intercepted by marine authorities from the self-ruled island late las
Rise of authoritarianism and what to do about it: a Q&A with Timothy Snyder
Do not obey in advance. Defend institutions. Believe in truth. These are some of the lessons that Yale University historian Timothy Snyder detailed in his book, “On Tyranny,” a guide to surviving America’s turn toward authoritarianism based on the events of 20th-century Europe. The lessons Snyder laid out in the 2017 book have found an eager audience also in Hong Kong and elsewhere. It became a best-seller during the protests that broke out in the city last summer, calling for greater autonomy from Beijing and freer elections. One of the most popular slogans centered its scrutiny on tyranny itself: “There are no rioters, only tyranny.” As Hong Kong’s freedoms face new threats from a sweeping
From Belarus to Thailand: Hong Kong’s protest playbook is spreading everywhere
Black-clad protesters with colorful umbrellas. Yellow helmets and plumes of tear gas. Leaderless crowds standing off against police. These protest scenes around the world – in places as different as Thailand, Belarus, Lebanon and the United States – have been striking in their likeness to the anti-government protests in Hong Kong last year. Social media has been central to helping protesters in Hong Kong draw global attention to their calls for freer elections and greater autonomy from Beijing. The loosely coordinated campaign in Hong Kong has also spread protest savvy, leading to a global wave of demonstrations more resistant to conventional law enforcement tactics and forming unlikely alli
This group may be the reason for recent Hong Kong national security law arrests
Hong Kong police arrested Apple Daily founder Jimmy Lai under the national security law as part of an investigation into an online group that canvassed foreign countries to sanction the city and received more than HK$1 million ($129,000) from overseas bank accounts, the South China Morning Post has learned. Former student activist Agnes Chow and two others arrested were also allegedly involved in the group. Sources said the group is called “I want laam caau,” a Cantonese expression meaning “embrace and fry.” It sums up the popular protest slogan, “If we burn, you burn with us,” used by participants in the anti-government unrest that roiled the former British colony last year. Officers from t
The #MilkTeaAlliance that connects Asian protesters
Every Tuesday and Thursday, Inkstone Explains unravels the ideas and context behind the headlines to help you understand news about China. An unusual alliance is forming between democracy advocates in Southeast Asia and East Asia.  On the 31st anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown, some Thai students joined their Hong Kong counterparts in mourning demonstrators killed in central Beijing. Anti-government protesters in Hong Kong have backed Thai activists' call for democracy in the kingdom. And both were joined by Taiwanese critics of Beijing in lambasting its assertive moves against the self-ruled island. This union is called the Milk Tea Alliance, a nod to the ubiquitous drink i
Britain moves to halt extradition to Hong Kong over national security law
Britain was on Monday poised to announce plans to suspend or revoke its extradition treaty with Hong Kong in response to mainland China imposing a controversial national security law on the former British colony. The plans looked set to further sour Britain’s diplomatic relations with Beijing, as US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo began his London visit to hammer out a British-American strategy on China with Prime Minister Boris Johnson. British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was expected to make an announcement on the Hong Kong treaty when he addressed his country’s parliament on Monday. It followed weeks of lobbying from lawmakers to suspend a legal instrument they fear could be used by Hon
Front-line activists won big in Hong Kong polls. Beijing is not amused
Beijing could further crack down on Hong Kong’s political opposition ahead of key legislative elections in September, analysts say. Chinese officials have lashed out at organizers of an unofficial primary over the weekend after activists on the front lines of anti-government protests outperformed their rivals in the opposition bloc. Two central government offices overseeing Hong Kong affairs have accused the primary’s organizers of trying to subvert state power in breach of a new national security law. It may portend the mass disqualification of pro-democracy candidates that could lead to further unrest, observers said. “They might see the high turnout as a result of the mobilization of for
Hong Kong’s new security law puts social media giants in a tough spot
The Hong Kong authorities could block social media giants if they refused to hand over user data to the police under a new national security law, analysts said, describing a worst-case scenario that could drive global internet companies out of the Asian financial center. The world’s leading social media firms, including Google, Facebook (and its messaging app WhatsApp), Twitter, Telegram and LinkedIn, have so far presented a united front against such requests.  Their announcements to hit pause on processing requests by Hong Kong authorities for user data came a week after Beijing imposed the security law that critics feared could be used to crack down on dissent in the city. The former Briti