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NEWSLETTER: CFHK Foundation Calls for Hong Kong Sanctions


The Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong (CFHK) Foundation opposes Hong Kong’s proposed Safeguarding National Security Bill, or Article 23 legislation, and urges the United States to hold the Hong Kong government accountable for its destruction of the rule of law. 

As the bill moves toward speedy passage, the CFHK Foundation calls on the U.S. government to sanction Hong Kong officials complicit in the Article 23 legislation.

The new law criminalises five types of security crimes, including treason, insurrection, theft of state secrets and espionage, sabotage, and external interference. Punishment ranges up to life imprisonment. 

The vaguely written and broad definition of the offences would allow the Hong Kong government to target anyone for exercising rights guaranteed under the Basic Law, Hong Kong’s mini-constitution, as well as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. 

Reacting to the CFHK Foundation’s call for sanctions, the Hong Kong Government termed the CFHK Foundation an “anti-China” group potentially in violation of Hong Kong law, and falsely claimed that planned Article 23 legislation will “respect and protect human rights”. 

Jimmy Lai's Trial Update

Andy Li, a computer programmer turned pro-democracy activist arrested and tortured in China, began his testimony against Jimmy Lai on March 13th.

Although he’s billed as the star prosecution witness, Li tied Lai to nothing more sinister than helping a global advertising campaign designed to win international support for Hong Kong’s democracy movement.  Prosecutors allege Lai was the mastermind behind a campaign for foreign sanctions on Hong Kong and China.

Politicians, activists, and lawyers have raised concerns that Li’s evidence may have been obtained under torture during his detention in mainland China and his subsequent incarceration in a Hong Kong psychiatric hospital.

Hong Kong

Sixteen international religious freedom experts, including the CFHK Foundation’s Policy and Advocacy Coordinator Frances Hui, signed a statement  expressing “profound and grave concerns” about the implications of the new Article 23 security law on religious freedom. The planned laws directly threaten the confidentiality of the Catholic Church’s Sacrament of Penance (Confession).                       

Signatories include the former Chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom Nadine Maenza, the Director of the Hudson Institute’s Centre for Religious Freedom Nina Shea, and the Ethics and Public Policy Centre’s Senior Fellow George Weigel. The Hong Kong Government subsequently released a statement attacking the letter as a “deliberate smearing and divisive act”.


The CFHK Foundation Doubles Down on Call for U.S. Sanctions, Despite Hong Kong Government's Fury

This blog is authored by Frances Hui, the Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation's Policy and Advocacy Coordinator in Washington D.C.

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