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EU Parliament Urges Release of Jimmy Lai

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The European Parliament passed an urgent Resolution urging “the Hong Kong Government to immediately and unconditionally release and drop all charges against Jimmy Lai and all other pro-democracy representatives and activists who have exercised their freedom of expression and basic human rights.” The Resolution was passed with 483 votes in favour, 9 against and 42 abstentions.

Frances Hui, Policy and Advocacy Coordinator for the Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation, met with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and delivered a joint letter supporting the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office Certification Act, a bill that would curtail the ability of the Hong Kong government to wage its propaganda activities in the United States; this letter had 30 supporting organizations.

Representatives from the Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation were among more than 1,000 people who participated in a “612” rally in London, commemorating 12 June 2019, the day that Hong Kong police violently attacked protesters in Hong Kong. In a chilling reminder of the threat that China poses in England, Hong Kongers in Southampton were attacked by mainland Chinese students after a 612 rally in the city.

Hong Kong

The Hong Kong government tried to ban the song, Glory to Hong Kong. On 12 June 2023, the Hong Kong court adjourned a hearing regarding the government application to ban this protest song. On 14 June 2023, Glory to Hong Kong was no longer appearing on major streaming services.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Google, Microsoft, and OpenAI have restricted access to their artificial intelligence software in Hong Kong. “While none of the companies have given reasons, observers say they could be exposed to risk if the chatbots spew out content that violates a national-security law imposed by China nearly three years ago.”

Hong Kong government censors demanded cuts from three films at a local film festival in Hong Kong. Filmmakers who had movies shown at a local festival replaced censored scenes with “black images and muted sound,” according to organisers.

UK-China Relations

As reported in the South China Morning Post, the Lord Mayor of London visited Hong Kong. The goal of his visit was to demonstrate "normal business relations" between Hong Kong and the UK following the Covid-19 pandemic.

British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has been formally invited to visit China, meaning a trip is highly likely to take place in the next few months. This visit would make Cleverly the first UK foreign secretary to travel to China in more than five years.

US-China Relations

Will he or won’t he? Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee wants to come to the APEC meeting in San Francisco in November, despite being subject to US sanctions. The US Department of State amended an earlier statement indicating that he would be invited. According to the State Department, through Reuters, "no decisions about invitations have been made." APEC participation must be in accordance with U.S. laws and regulations, "including with respect to sanctions".

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