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U.S. Congress targets Hong Kong judges and prosecutors complicit in persecuting pro-democracy

Updated: Nov 7, 2023

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A bipartisan and bicameral group of U.S. lawmakers led by Congresswoman Young Kim (R-CA-40) introduced the Hong Kong Sanctions Act. The Committee for Freedom in Hong Kong Foundation (CFHK Foundation) spearheaded this effort that would lead to the sanctioning of Hong Kong officials who have played an active and chief role in undermining the rule of law in Hong Kong. Congresswoman Young Kim said, “I am proud to lead the Hong Kong Sanctions Act so the United States can take strong, decisive action to support the freedom-loving people of Hong Kong and hold officials accountable in violation of human rights.”

The Hong Kong government reported that Hong Kong Financial Secretary Paul Chan will attend the U.S.-hosted Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in San Francisco this month following a campaign by multiple human rights organisations including the CFHK Foundation to bar U.S.-sanctioned Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee from attending. Frances Hui, Policy and Advocacy Coordinator of the CFHK Foundation told Real Clear Politics, “While we are pleased that John Lee will not be attending APEC in the United States, we are disappointed that the Hong Kong government received an invite. It is time to go further and deny Hong Kong its own separate place at the political table. If ‘one country, two systems’ is now dead, then China should not have two bites of the same apple.”

On the 14th of November, the CFHK Foundation, Civitas and Bob Seely MP will be hosting a report launch in the British Parliament, titled, ‘The strategic dependence of UK Universities on funding from China – and the challenges to our national security’. Leading researchers and commentators will expose the latest information on the Chinese Communist Party’s influence within British universities. To RSVP, please contact RSVP required to attend.

On the 15th of November, the CFHK Foundation, Henry Jackson Society and Tom Randall MP will be hosting a panel discussion in the British Parliament, titled, ‘De-risking British Universities’ over-reliance on China’. The panel will explore the national security challenges posed by the Chinese Communist Party's concerted efforts to expand its overseas intelligence gathering and exert foreign policy influence on British university campuses. To RSVP, please contact RSVP required to attend.

Hong Kong

John Lee defended Hong Kong’s elections despite preventing the Democratic Party, the largest pro-democracy party in Hong Kong, to participate. The Democratic Party will be absent from the Hong Kong District Council elections for the first time since the Party’s establishment in 1994.

Civicus urged the Hong Kong authorities to release pro-democracy activist Chow Hang-Tung from solitary confinement. "The practice exemplifies the relentless and brutal harassment of human rights defenders in Hong Kong," said Rajavelu Karunanithi, Civicus’ Advocacy Officer for Asia.

Hong Kong denied a visa to Rowena He, an eminent scholar of China’s 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown. This will prevent He from resuming her teaching position in Hong Kong and effectively end her academic career in the city.

Hong Kong's legislature passed a controversial bill aimed at significantly reducing the influence of staff and academics in the Chinese University of Hong Kong despite more than 1,500 people signing a petition in opposition of the bill.

UK-China Relations

China was invited to British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s artificial intelligence (AI) summit in the UK despite widespread opposition. Rishi Sunak told Politico, "It's the right decision for the country in the long term. I think there can't really be a substantive conversation about AI without involving the world's leading AI nations. And China is indisputably one of those.”

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