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Hong Kong: 11 more national security arrests over attempted boat escape to Taiwan

Hong Kong police have arrested 11 other folks beneath the nationwide safety regulation for allegedly serving to 12 pro-democracy activists accused of making an attempt to escape town by way of boat for Taiwan ultimate yr, native media and activists have reported.

Police arrested 8 males and 3 girls elderly 18 to 72 for “helping offenders”, in line with the South China Morning Put up, which cited unnamed resources.

Daniel Wong Kwok-tung, a legal professional who attempted to lend a hand the 12 other folks detained in mainland China ultimate August, was once amongst the ones arrested.

Wong wrote on Fb that police arrived at his rental at 6am on Thursday.

A member of town’s Democratic birthday party, Wong is understood for offering felony help to loads of protesters arrested all through the anti-government protests in Hong Kong in 2019. He mentioned he didn’t know to which police station he could be taken.

Police advised Reuters they have been nonetheless amassing data and may just now not make any fast remark.

Native media mentioned the ones arrested have been suspected of helping the 12 Hong Kong citizens, who confronted fees associated with anti-government protests within the Chinese language-ruled town in 2019, of their try to flee ultimate yr. The crowd of 12 was once arrested at sea as they attempted to flee to Taiwan by way of speedboat.

In past due December, a Chinese language court docket sentenced 10 of them to between seven months and 3 years in jail for illegally crossing the border, in a case that drew world consideration and worry over the remedy of the activists.

Two, who have been minors on the time of arrest, were returned to Hong Kong.

The detainees’ households mentioned that they had been denied get entry to to unbiased attorneys and aired suspicion that Hong Kong government helped in China’s arrests.

Self-ruled Taiwan has transform a well-liked vacation spot for Hong Kong pro-democracy activists since Beijing imposed a countrywide safety regulation in June 2020, a transfer that critics say is geared toward stamping out dissent and curtailing freedoms.

Greater than 100 other folks were arrested beneath the nationwide safety regulation.

On Thursday, the telecom supplier the Hong Kong Broadband Community admitted it had blocked an anti-government web page in an effort to agree to the regulation. It’s believed to be the primary time the regulation has been utilized by police to censor on-line content material with out involving the courts.

The affirmation adopted native media stories over the weekend that police had ordered suppliers to limit get entry to to HKChronicles, a pro-democracy platform that amassed and revealed data all through the 2019 mass protests, together with the identities of law enforcement officials.

Hong Kong returned to Chinese language rule in 1997 with the ensure of freedoms now not loved at the mainland, together with freedom of speech and meeting. Democracy activists say Communist birthday party rulers in China are eroding the ones freedoms, a rate Beijing rejects.

The U.S. and Eu Union have referred to as for the activists to be launched and allowed to go back to Hong Kong.

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