Hong Kong police on Thursday arrested a lawyer and 10 others on suspicion of serving to 12 Hong Kong activists attempt to flee the town, media reported.
The contemporary wave of arrests comes every week after 55 activists have been apprehended within the largest transfer towards Hong Kong’s democracy motion since Beijing imposed a new nationwide safety regulation final June to quell dissent within the semi-autonomous area.
The clampdown has intensified issues that Beijing is asserting extra management over the town and breaking its promise of Hong Kong sustaining separate civil rights and political techniques for 50 years from the handover from Britain in 1997.
Police arrested eight males and three girls aged 18 to 72 for “assisting offenders,” based on the South China Morning Post, which cited unnamed sources. They have been quoted as saying that investigations to date indicated these arrested weren’t in breach of any offences underneath the nationwide safety regulation.
Those arrested are suspected of serving to the 12 Hong Kong youth who have been detained at sea by mainland Chinese authorities while making an attempt to sail to Taiwan final August. Some of the fugitives have been wished in Hong Kong for offences associated to anti-government protests in 2019.
Police didn’t instantly touch upon the arrests.
District councillor and lawyer Daniel Wong Kwok-tung posted on his Facebook web page that nationwide safety officers had arrived at his residence. He was later taken to his office, where police performed a search.
Wong, a member of the Democratic Party, is understood for offering authorized help to tons of of activists arrested throughout the 2019 protests.
Last month, 10 of these detained at sea have been sentenced to jail in Shenzhen for illegally crossing the border, with sentences ranging between seven months to a few years. The two other detainees, who’re minors, have been handed over to Hong Kong and will face additional expenses within the metropolis for absconding, authorities stated.
Hong Kong has jailed a number of pro-democracy activists in latest months, together with Joshua Wong and Agnes Chow, for his or her involvement in anti-government protests. Others have been charged underneath the nationwide safety regulation, together with media tycoon and outspoken pro-democracy advocate Jimmy Lai.
The safety regulation criminalizes acts of subversion, secession, terrorism and collusion with international powers to intervene within the metropolis’s affairs. Serious offenders might resist life imprisonment.
Last week, the international ministers of Australia, the United States, Great Britain and Canada issued a joint assertion expressing “serious concern” concerning the arrests. They stated “it is clear that the National Security Law is being used to eliminate dissent and opposing political views.”