OTTAWA – Responding to reports that more than 50 of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy activists have been arrested, the Green Party of Canada condemned the continuing erosion of civil liberties by the city’s pro-Beijing government.
“This is the latest attempt by the Chinese government to eliminate civil liberties in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (Hong Kong SAR),” said Green Party Leader Annamie Paul. “It is yet another egregious example of Beijing using the national security law that they imposed in Hong Kong SAR last year to quash any attempt at a fair, democratic process in the former British colony.
“Many of those arrested today were citizens exercising their right to select opposition candidates ahead of the postponed 2020 elections. The arrests also included candidates who ran in last year’s primaries, in addition to organizers and pollsters.
“We remind the Chinese government that under the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration, autonomy was assured to the Hong Kong SAR. The right to peaceful assembly and the right to select political candidates by its citizens is a fundamental right of all democratic societies. The Green Party of Canada’s thoughts and solidarity are also with our citizens based in Hong Kong SAR as these seek to exercise their fundamental rights.
“Today’s events are extremely disturbing and reflect a very concisely planned attempt to curb fundamental freedoms in the SAR, a plan that has only accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic. Canada and democratic governments around the world must speak with one voice in condemning this latest outrage and urging the Chinese government to halt and reverse the erosion of civil liberties in Hong Kong SAR.”
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