Hong Kong’s ‘Captain America’ protester is second convicted under national security law

HONG KONG — A Hong Kong activist dubbed “Captain America 2.0” for wielding the superhero’s defend throughout protests was discovered responsible of incitement to secession on Monday, the second individual convicted underneath a nationwide safety legislation imposed by China in a crackdown on dissent.

Former deliveryman Ma Chun-man, 31, was accused of selling Hong Kong independence from China by chanting slogans, holding up placards and giving media interviews throughout 20 demonstrations final 12 months.

“Such a transparent political stance has undoubtedly made individuals consider that the defendant had the intention to incite secession,” stated district courtroom choose Stanley Chan.

“The defendant has continually and unreservedly incited issues which are forbidden underneath the nationwide safety legislation.”

Ma, who had pleaded not responsible, selected to not testify in courtroom nor summon any witnesses.

Obtain the NBC Information app for breaking information and politics

The nationwide safety legislation was imposed by Beijing in June final 12 months, punishing what China sees as subversion, secession, terrorism and collusion with international forces within the former British colony that returned to Chinese language rule in 1997.

Greater than 100 individuals, together with opposition politicians and activists, have been charged underneath the laws and are actually present process authorized proceedings that might see some jailed for all times.

Critics say authorities have used the safety legislation as a instrument of repression, and that the suitable to free speech, enshrined within the metropolis’s mini-constitution, the Primary Regulation, has been severely undermined.

Ma’s conviction was primarily based on issues that he stated or wrote, moderately than any violent act. Hong Kong’s first nationwide safety conviction concerned a person, Tong Ying-kit, who rode a motorbike into a gaggle of law enforcement officials. Tong was sentenced to 9 years in jail.

The courtroom was proven movies of Ma chanting “Hong Kong independence, the one approach out.” A pocket book titled “Captain America’s Diary of Resistance” was additionally seized.

Protection lawyer Edwin Choy advised the courtroom earlier that Ma had solely wished to train his proper to free speech, and that they had been merely “empty slogans” and by no means acted upon.

It wasn’t instantly clear if Ma, who faces a most sentence of seven years, will enchantment. He’ll subsequent seem in courtroom on Nov. 11.

Earlier on Monday, worldwide rights group Amnesty Worldwide stated it will shut its Hong Kong places of work as a result of the nationwide safety legislation had made it “successfully unimaginable” for rights teams to work freely with out the chance of reprisals.

Anjhula Mya Singh Bais, the chair of Amnesty’s worldwide board, stated in an announcement that the 2 places of work would shut by year-end, noting an intensification of a crackdown that has compelled not less than 35 teams to disband underneath the legislation this 12 months.

Officers from the Hong Kong Confederation of Commerce Unions stated this month that it will disband, one in every of dozens of civil society teams to take action underneath the brand new legislation.Sipa USA through AP

“This choice, made with a heavy coronary heart, has been pushed by Hong Kong’s nationwide safety legislation, which has made it successfully unimaginable for human rights organizations in Hong Kong to work freely and with out concern of great reprisals,” Singh Bais stated.

“The setting of repression and perpetual uncertainty created by the nationwide safety legislation makes it unimaginable to know what actions may result in legal sanctions,” she added.

A Hong Kong Safety Bureau spokesman stated in response to a Reuters request for remark that “each individual or group should abide by the legal guidelines of Hong Kong,” and that the safety laws “upholds human rights.”

Hong Kong and Chinese language authorities have justified the legislation as needed to revive stability after mass protests in 2019, when hundreds of thousands took to the streets over many months.

Previously, Hong Kong had served as one in every of Asia’s main NGO hubs, with teams drawn to the strong rule of legislation and wide-ranging autonomy that Chinese language officers had promised could be preserved. Among the many teams to have disbanded this 12 months are a number of main commerce unions, NGOs {and professional} teams, whereas quite a few different NGOs have relocated to the democratic island of Taiwan.

Source link


News7h: Update the world's latest breaking news online of the day, breaking news, politics, society today, international mainstream news .Updated news 24/7: Entertainment, the World everyday world. Hot news, images, video clips that are updated quickly and reliably

Related Articles

Back to top button