Law firm, other people arrested by Hong Kong national safety unit

HONG KONG (AP) – Hong Kong police on Thursday said they arrested 11 folks on suspicion of helping offenders who are considered to be the 12 Hong Kong activists detained at sea by mainland Chinese authorities even though making an attempt to flee the metropolis previous 12 months.

District councilor and law firm Daniel Wong Kwok-tung posted on his Facebook website page early Thursday that countrywide safety officers had arrived at his home. He was afterwards taken to his place of work, where by police done a lookup.

Wong, a member of the Democratic Party, is recognised for furnishing authorized support to hundreds of activists arrested for the duration of antigovernment protests in 2019.

The fresh new wave of arrests comes a 7 days following 55 activists were being apprehended in the premier shift towards Hong Kong’s democracy motion due to the fact Beijing imposed a new national protection regulation last June to quell dissent in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.

The clampdown has intensified concerns that Beijing is asserting extra regulate around the city and breaking its promise of Hong Kong maintaining independent civil rights and political devices for 50 several years from the handover from Britain control in 1997.

Police claimed in an emailed assertion that these arrested Thursday have been eight guys and a few women of all ages aged 18 to 72. The identities of these arrested have been not unveiled.

Area media experiences stated those people arrested are suspected of serving to the 12 Hong Kong activists who ended up detained at sea by mainland Chinese authorities although attempting to sail to Taiwan past August. Some of the fugitives were being wanted in Hong Kong for offenses associated to the 2019 protests.

Past thirty day period, 10 of the activists detained at sea were being sentenced to jail in Shenzhen for illegally crossing the border, with sentences ranging between seven months to 3 many years. The two other detainees, who are minors, have been handed more than to Hong Kong and could deal with additional charges in the metropolis for absconding, authorities explained.

Hong Kong has jailed quite a few professional-democracy activists in modern months, together with Joshua Wong and Agnes Chow, for their involvement in the anti-governing administration protests. Some others have been billed less than the nationwide security legislation, including media tycoon and outspoken pro-democracy advocate Jimmy Lai.

The protection legislation criminalizes functions of subversion, secession, terrorism and collusion with overseas powers to intervene in the city’s affairs. Really serious offenders could encounter up to existence imprisonment.

Past 7 days, the foreign ministers of Australia, the United States, Wonderful Britain and Canada issued a joint statement expressing “serious concern” about the arrests. They reported “it is clear that the National Safety Legislation is remaining applied to do away with dissent and opposing political sights.”

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