Hong Kong protests in 2019: two opposition politicians arrested

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Hong Kong | Two Hong Kong opposition parliamentarians were arrested on Wednesday for their participation in one of the demonstrations in the summer of 2019, against the backdrop of a strong takeover of the former British colony by its authorities aligned with Beijing.

Lam Cheuk-ting and Ted Hui were arrested early in the morning at their home, according to their Democratic Party and press releases on their Facebook account.

A source within the police confirmed their arrest, as well as that of 14 other people in this operation Wednesday morning in connection with some of the pro-democracy protests of July 2019.

MM. Lam and Hui sit in the opposition in the Legislative Council (LegCo, local parliament), where they do not hesitate to criticize the Chinese and Hong Kong authorities head on.

A post on Mr. Lam’s Facebook page says he was arrested on “suspicion of participating in a riot on July 21” 2019.

That day, the elected official and dozens of demonstrators were brutally attacked in the town of Yuen Long by government supporters, some of whom are suspected of belonging to the triads.

The police were slow to arrive and some police officers had been filmed letting the armed attackers go. This had contributed to fueling the population’s mistrust of the police, which was for months one of the ferments of the unprecedented protest since the handover in 1997.

Mr. Lam was also charged with “conspiracy to cause damage to property and obstruction of justice,” the statement said.

Mr. Hui’s office also released a video of his arrest, in which police say he is being prosecuted, among other things, for attempting to obstruct justice. He was taken away in handcuffs.

His party said his arrest was also linked to a demonstration on July 6, 2019.

The police refused to answer questions about this crackdown.

Hong Kong experienced its worst political crisis from June to December since its surrender to China in 1997, with almost daily demonstrations, which sometimes degenerated into violence, to denounce the decline in freedoms and interference from Beijing.

At the end of June, Beijing imposed a drastic national security law on the territory that has helped to considerably strengthen the grip of the Chinese central power over Hong Kong.

A number of activists for democracy denounce a liberticidal text which, according to them, comes to an end with the principle “One country, two systems” established during the handover in 1997 and which guaranteed until 2047 to Hong Kongers freedoms unknown in the rest of the country. China.

A dozen figures from the pro-democracy movement were banned in July from standing in the next LegCo elections.

More than 9,000 people have been arrested in Hong Kong since June 2019.

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