Hong Kong – Police arrested seven pro-democracy politicians early Sunday morning over a heated meeting in May, when local legislatures filled with protests over a battle for control of a key committee.
The arrests came as the governments of Hong Kong and Beijing made widespread efforts to quell dissent, after a year of intense protest in the semi-autonomous city.
Authorities have used aggressive social distancing rules against protesters, whose numbers have decreased since last year. The sweeping National Security Act that Beijing imposed on the city at the end of June imposes potentially severe penalties for a series of poorly defined crimes such as sabotage and collusion.
Politicians arrested on Sunday are embroiled in heated disputes over control of a key committee in Hong Kong’s legislature. He has been a pro-democracy lawmaker for months Debate over several major bills stalled, infuriating the foundation camp The government and Beijing’s strong liaison office in Hong Kong borrowed.
Pro-government lawmakers, who enjoy a majority in the legislature in part because of their dominance of seats reserved for industries and other interest groups, He served as Chairman of the Committee on May 8. This law sparked renewed protests in the Legislative Council.
Stary Lee, the institutional legislator who presided over the committee, fired several pro-democracy representatives during the tumultuous session.
Pro-democracy lawmakers Wu Chi-wai, Andrew Wan, Helena Wong and Fernando Cheung were all arrested on Sunday, along with Kwok Weng Kin, chairman of the Hong Kong Labor Party, and former lawmakers Eddy Chu and Ray Chan, according to publications. On their social media accounts.
The police confirmed the arrest of six men and a woman on charges of contempt and interference, according to the decree of the region’s legislative council. They did not rule out the possibility of arresting more people in connection with the accident.
Mister Chan was in the former He opened a private case against Kwok Wai-keungHe is a pro-foundation legislator Drag him to the ground During the contentious session. Mr Chan said he initiated the private lawsuit, a little used mechanism in Hong Kong law, because he does not believe the authorities will act against Mr Kwok.
Hong Kong’s Legislative Council has witnessed an increasing number of protests by lawmakers in recent years, particularly by members of the opposition camp who have emerged through the anti-government protests. Before massive street demonstrations swept the city last year to defeat a proposal that would have allowed extradition to China, the measure was discussed in deeply messy sessions in the legislature at times.
Hong Kong government Postponed legislative elections scheduled for September, Noting the risks of the spread of Covid-19. The pro-democracy camp condemned the move, saying it was a delaying tactic aimed at avoiding losing the institution. Mr. Chu and Mr. Chan said in September that they would not continue in office because they believed a one-year extension to the legislature was against the law.