Hong Kong arrests lawyer days after renewed concerns over new law
Following recent controversies around the new, controversial national security law, the Hong Kong police officials have arrested a lawyer and 10 others on suspicion that they assisted 12 residents in fleeing the city.
Only days after foreign ministers from Australia, the UK, the US and Canada condemned China for 55 arrests under the national security law, a lawyer has been arrested on suspicion of “assisting offenders”. Those arrested are suspected of helping 12 young residents who were detained at sea by mainland authorities.
The fresh arrests are the results of further tensions in Hong Kong that have been made worse by the controversial national security laws and have renewed concerns mainland China is attempting to assert more control over Hong Kong’s separate systems.
District councillor and lawyer Daniel Wong Kwok-tung posted on social media that the officials had turned up at his house and he was later taken to his office where they had carried out a search. Mr Wong is known for providing legal assistance to the hundreds of activists who were arrested during the 2019 protests.
In a statement to China and Hong Kong officials, the foreign ministers asked that they “respect legal guaranteed rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong without any fear of arrest and detention”.
“The National Security Law is in breach of the Sino-British Joint Declaration which has undermined the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ framework. It has curtailed the rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong,” the foreign ministers’ statement read.