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Hong Kong Government Continues Attacks on Western Coverage

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The UK identified 2 malicious cyber campaigns run by China targeting democratic institutions and parliamentarians. The UK deputy Prime Minister, Oliver Dowden, said the hackers had gained access to information on 40 million UK voters held by the Electoral Commission, as well as engaged in cyber-espionage targeting Parliamentarians who have been outspoken about the threat from China. 

 

In response to the attack, the UK Government, in coordination with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, announced sanctions on two Chinese individuals and one Chinese company for severe cyber-attacks targeting the UK electoral commission. The U.S. disclosed more details of the cyber-attack campaign involving 10,000 malicious emails sent to politicians and journalists. The New Zealand government has also said the attack was “unacceptable” and has raised concerns with China over links to cyberattacks on its parliamentary services. 

 

The British Foreign Secretary, David Cameron, announced that the Government has summoned the Chinese ambassador, imposed sanctions, travel bans, and asset freezes on the individuals and group responsible. Iain Duncan Smith, one of the targeted MPs said: “We’ve been very clear that the situation now is that China is behaving in an increasingly assertive way abroad, authoritarian at home, it represents an epoch-defining challenge, and the greatest state-based threat to our economic security. So, it’s right that we take measures to protect ourselves, which is what we are doing.” 

 

The Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong (CFHK) Foundation welcomes the imposition of sanctions but emphasises the need for further measures: expel diplomats engaged in interference, reduce reliance on Chinese funds in education, and close Confucius Institutes and Hong Kong Economic and Trade offices. 


(Left) Conservative MP Tim Loughton, (Centre) Conservative MP Iain Duncan Smith and (Right) SNP MP Stewart McDonald from the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), hold a press conference in London on March 25th.


Jimmy Lai's Trial Update


The trial of Jimmy Lai resumed on March 25th, with Andy Li, a pro-democracy activist arrested and apparently tortured in China, testifying against Lai.


Detailed trial updates available at: Support Jimmy Lai.


Hong Kong


Hong Kong’s Civic Party, formerly the city’s second-largest pro-democracy political party, officially ceased its operations after 18 years. This decision was prompted by the imposition of the Article 23 Security Law. Chairperson Alan Leong expressed to local media that assessing the potential legal risks even after the party's disbandment was difficult. 


The Hong Kong government once again condemned the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) for covering the enactment of Article 23 national security legislation. Their statement accused the BBC of being "extremely misleading" and condemned what they deemed as "fact-twisting" remarks by anti-China organisations quoted within the coverage.  


The Hong Kong government has also condemned the New York Times for publishing an op-ed discussing the city’s "lost freedom." Secretary for Security Chris Tang wrote a letter labelling the op-ed as "extremely misleading" and urging the newspaper to "stop making scaremongering remarks." 


United Nations


Six UN Special Rapporteurs wrote a letter to the Chinese and Hong Kong governments, urging a comprehensive review and reconsideration of the new Safeguarding National Security Ordinance (so-called Article 23 legislation) , to ensure alignment with international human rights norms. 


THE 'FLAME OF FREEDOM' BLOG🔥


Scottish Sectors Overleveraged by China


This blog is authored by Alyssa Fong, Public Affairs and Advocacy Manager at the Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation. 


"After the Scottish university budget cuts were announced, Scottish universities were forced to rely on international students to make up for the loss.  This seemingly innocent endeavour has allowed the Chinese Communist Party to dig its claws deeper into the Scottish economy."


Read More Here



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