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World Hong Kong authorities arrest 11 over activists’ attempted Taiwan boat escape

08:40  14 january  2021
08:40  14 january  2021 Source:   washingtonpost.com

In Hong Kong, dozens of arrests for pro-democracy activities will have a chilling effect

  In Hong Kong, dozens of arrests for pro-democracy activities will have a chilling effect 4 things to know about Hong Kong’s political future. Since China implemented the National Security Law in July, pro-democracy figures have faced repeated arrests. Prominent activists Joshua Wong, Agnes Chow and Ivan Lam were sentenced to prison over illegal assembly charges. Media mogul Jimmy Lai is behind bars, charged with colluding with foreign entities.

Hong Kong police have arrested 11 people under the national security law for allegedly helping 12 pro-democracy activists accused of attempting to flee the city by boat for Taiwan last year, local media and activists The group of 12 was arrested at sea as they tried to escape to Taiwan by speedboat.

Hong Kong police have arrested 11 individuals for suspected crimes related to assisting a group of 12 individuals who attempted to escape the city, local media reported on Thursday. Reporting by Twinnie Siu in Hong Kong ; Writing by Se Young Lee; Editing by Christian Schmollinger.

HONG KONG —Hong Kong's national security police on Thursday arrested 11 people for allegedly helping a group of activists attempt to flee the city by boat to Taiwan, according to social media posts and friends of those detained, expanding the dragnet around those connected with the democracy movement.

a group of people wearing costumes: Daniel Wong Kwok-tung, a lawyer, at rear, is escorted by police in Hong Kong on Thursday. © Tyrone Siu/Reuters Daniel Wong Kwok-tung, a lawyer, at rear, is escorted by police in Hong Kong on Thursday.

The group of activists, known as the Hong Kong 12, were captured by Chinese authorities at sea in August and held incommunicado for months; 10 were sentenced in December by a Chinese court to prison terms of between seven months and three years. The other two, both minors at the time of their attempted escape, were returned to Hong Kong and remain in custody.

First came political crimes. Now, a digital crackdown descends on Hong Kong.

  First came political crimes. Now, a digital crackdown descends on Hong Kong. Internet restrictions and mass seizure of devices demonstrate how police are broadly wielding new powers under the national security law. Determined to find his phones, they had prepared a list of mobile numbers registered to his name, even one he used exclusively for banking, said the 23-year-old Hong Kong activist. Officers called each number in succession, the vibrations revealing the locations of three iPhones around his apartment.

Hong Kong police have arrested 11 more people for suspected crimes related to helping a group of 12 activists who attempted to escape the city to Taiwan , local media The so-called " Hong Kong 12" allegedly attempted to escape Hong Kong on a boat to seek asylum in Taiwan in August 2020.

Chinese prosecutors have officially indicted 10 of the 12 Hong Kongers detained in mainland China, months after they were arrested for attempting to flee to Taiwan by boat .

The sweep of the additional 11 on Thursday in a predawn raid underscored a deepening climate of fear since Beijing imposed a national security law in June that curtailed political freedoms in Hong Kong. The city’s leader, Carrie Lam, promised that the law would be used against a “very small minority” of people, but authorities have wielded their new powers broadly, arresting more than 100 people since then, including former lawmakers, moderate activists and others across the ranks of civil society.

[First came political crimes. Now, a digital crackdown descends on Hong Kong.]

Police said they could not immediately comment on Thursday’s arrests, which came just over a week after more than 50 people affiliated with the pro-democracy cause were arrested on national security grounds.

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Activists were among those detained off Guangdong province on Sunday, Hong Kong media say. Chinese authorities have arrested at least 10 people after intercepting a boat believed to be heading to Attempts by people from Hong Kong to flee the territory by boat are considered to be rare.

HONG KONG — The Hong Kong police said on Saturday that they had arrested nine people The activists ’ have been barred from seeing human rights lawyers and were told that the attorneys at their trial 23 escape attempt , suggesting that the local police played a role in ensnaring the protesters.

Those detained Thursday include a lawyer, Daniel Wong Kwok-tung, who is also a district councilor, a local elected official. Wong, who helped many protesters arrested during anti-government demonstrations in 2019, also founded a restaurant in Taiwan that employs Hong Kongers living in exile there. A musician, Rono Fok, was also among those arrested.

a close up of a man in glasses looking at the camera: Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam at a news conference on Jan. 12. China has cracked down on Hong Kong’s democracy movement and imposed a security law last summer that curtailed the city’s political rights. © Vincent Yu/AP Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam at a news conference on Jan. 12. China has cracked down on Hong Kong’s democracy movement and imposed a security law last summer that curtailed the city’s political rights.

National security officers conducted the arrests, according to social media posts and friends of those held, but police have not yet detailed if the alleged crimes fall under the security law.

People previously arrested under the security law and others held for politically related offenses in the city have had their passports confiscated, as authorities worry about the influence of the growing number of Hong Kongers in exile abroad.

Pompeo to send UN ambassador to Taiwan in rebuke of China's Hong Kong crackdown

  Pompeo to send UN ambassador to Taiwan in rebuke of China's Hong Kong crackdown U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft will travel to Taiwan in a high-profile celebration of the island’s autonomy from the mainland Chinese Communist Party following the regime’s crackdown in Hong Kong. © Provided by Washington Examiner “The United States supports the Hong Kong people and all who yearn for freedom,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced early Thursday. “In that vein, I am pleased to announce the upcoming visit of U.S.

democracy activists from Hong Kong after they attempted to escape to Taiwan by boat earlier this year. Hong Kong democracy activists for up to three years over a bid to flee the city by speedboat to The group were arrested by the Chinese coastguard on 23 August as they made their way to the

Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong has been remanded in custody after pleading guilty to charges related to a protest outside police headquarters last year, during months of unrest over a proposed extradition bill with China.

Fears about the reach of the security law, which targets broadly worded offenses such as secession, subversion, terrorism and foreign collusion, prompted restaurants to remove pro-democracy posters and activists to disband their groups in recent months. In the wake of the law, some Hong Kong residents have left the city, fearing persecution. Some arrested for political crimes have skipped bail and are living without formal legal status in Western countries and Taiwan.

Others, including the 12 who tried to flee by boat, have tried other means of escape as the police had already confiscated their passports and travel documents.

In response to the crackdown, Western countries have tried to formalize pathways to residency and asylum for people fleeing Hong Kong, notably Britain, Hong Kong’s former colonial ruler.

The British government last year offered an avenue for some 3 million Hong Kong residents by allowing Hong Kongers who hold a British National (Overseas) passport, a holdover from the colonial era, to obtain U.K. residency and eventually citizenship.

The BNO measure will go into effect later this month. Leading pro-Beijing figures in Hong Kong have called for China to take reciprocal action to punish those leaving, including potentially forcing them to give up foreign citizenship.

First came political crimes. Now, a digital crackdown descends on Hong Kong. ‘Total submission’: With mass arrests, China neutralizes Hong Kong democracy movement Hong Kong democracy fighters face a dire choice: Go abroad or go to jail

Hong Kong opposition shudders as mass arrests herald 'a harsh winter' .
Hong Kong opposition shudders as mass arrests herald 'a harsh winter'Benny Tai emerged from the police station squinting under the glare of camera lights about 36 hours after he was arrested last week by officers from Hong Kong's new national security unit.

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