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U​.​S. must demand Hong Kong Drop All Charges against Democracy Activists 15

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On April 18, fifteen pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong have been arrested.  They are accused of organizing and participating in "unlawful assemblies" last year.

For years, the Beijing government has been slowly encroaching on Hong Kong's freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly and of demonstration as enshrined in Hong Kong's mini Constitution, the Basic Law.

The Basic Law is the result of the 1984 signing of the Sino-British Joint Declaration setting forth Britain's transfer of authority on Hong Kong to the Hong Kong Special Administration Region under China with the principle of "One Country, Two Systems". 

Further, the Basic Law provides that the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and international labour conventions as applied to Hong Kong shall remain in force.

Article 22 of the Basic Law states that “no department of the Central People's Government and no province, autonomous region, or municipality directly under the Central Government may interfere in the affairs which the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region administers on its own in accordance with this Law.” 

Yet, on April 17, 2020, Luo Huining, China’s appointed representative for Hong Kong and Macau Affairs, summarily declared that Beijing is not subject to such restrictions as stated in Article 22 and that it is entitled to supervise affairs in Hong Kong with the "correct" implementation of the Basic Law.

Luo's declaration clearly sets the arguments for Beijing to justify the arrest of the pro-democracy activists the following day.

We the undersigned ask our elected officials to demand that the officials of Hong Kong Special Administration Region under Beijing immediately dismiss all charges against the fifteen individuals listed below.

Mindful of Beijing's years of blatant violations of international norms and as well as Beijing's coverup of the Wuhan coronavirus, now called COVID-19, resulting in this current world pandemic, we further ask our elected officials to sanction Beijing until Beijing adheres to acceptable global behavior.

List of arrested activists:
Martin Lee Chu-ming (李柱銘)
Jimmy Chee-Ying Lai (黎智英) 
Margaret Ngoi-yee Ng (吳靄儀)
Albert Chun-yan Ho (何俊仁)
Kwok-hung Leung (梁國雄)
Nok-hin Au (歐諾軒)
Cyd Sau-lan Ho (何秀蘭)
Cheuk-yan Lee (李卓人)
Sum Yeung (楊森)
Richard Yiu-Cheong Tsoi (蔡耀昌)
Chung-kai Sin (單仲偕)
Avery Man-yuen Ng (吳文遠)
Figo Ho-wun Chan (陳晧桓)
Raphael Ho-ming Wong (黃浩銘)
Yiu-chung Leung (梁耀忠)



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