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Results of nationwide safety legislation undercut Hong Kong freedoms, says US authorities report

Whereas the report acknowledged a continued diploma of autonomy in Hong Kong, it mentioned the nationwide safety legislation and electoral modifications which have undercut the prospects for opposition political events have eroded variations between town and mainland China an excessive amount of for US legislation to use otherwise.

“There stay variations between Hong Kong and mainland China in some areas, together with business and commerce coverage, web freedoms and freedom of faith,” it mentioned.

In this Dec. 12, 2020, file photo, Jimmy Lai who founded the Apple Daily, is escorted by Correctional Services officers to get on a prison van before appearing in a court in Hong Kong. A national security law enacted in 2020 and COVID-19 restrictions have stifled major protests in Hong Kong including an annual march on July 1. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)

On this Dec. 12, 2020, file picture, Jimmy Lai who based the Apple Each day, is escorted by Correctional Companies officers to get on a jail van earlier than showing in a courtroom in Hong Kong. A nationwide safety legislation enacted in 2020 and COVID-19 restrictions have stifled main protests in Hong Kong together with an annual march on July 1. (AP Picture/Kin Cheung, File)

“However,” it added, “PRC and Hong Kong authorities continued to make use of ‘nationwide safety’ as a broad and obscure foundation … to stymie any progress towards common suffrage in elections for Hong Kong’s Chief Govt and Legislative Council as set out in Hong Kong’s Fundamental Regulation.”

In January, the Chinese language international ministry’s workplace in Hong Kong condemned a speech by Gregory Might, Washington’s high envoy within the metropolis, for related criticism about Beijing’s interpretation of the legislation.

The workplace accused him of “maliciously abusing Hong Kong’s nationwide safety legislation and the interpretation by NPC Standing Committee” and “deliberately smearing the enterprise atmosphere of Hong Kong”.

The report issued on Friday additionally cited Hong Kong’s arrest of retired Catholic chief Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun in Might on suspicion of colluding with exterior forces to hazard nationwide safety, crimes below the nationwide safety legislation punishable by life imprisonment.

The case of imprisoned Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai Chee-ying was additionally detailed within the report. Lai was sentenced in 2021 to 20 months in jail for his roles in 4 unauthorised assemblies.

Regardless of finishing that sentence, he stays locked up awaiting a Excessive Court docket trial and not using a jury over extra severe allegations of colluding with international forces.

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