Former Hong Kong lawmaker Ted Hui says will seek exile in Britain

Hui (above) fled Hong Kong for Copenhagen after Danish lawmakers issued an official invitation. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

COPENHAGEN (REUTERS) - Former Hong Kong lawmaker Ted Hui said on Thursday (Dec 3) he had fled the city after facing criminal charges and would seek exile in Britain to continue his pro-democratic activities.

Ted Hui, one of the pro-democracy activists arrested last month charged with disturbing legislature proceedings, arrived in Copenhagen earlier this week on an official invitation from Danish lawmakers.

"I hereby announce that I will go into exile and will withdraw my membership of Democratic Party of Hong Kong," Ted Hui said in a statement.

"There is no word to explain my pain and it's hard to hold back tears," he said.

He was one of several opposition lawmakers to quit Hong Kong's legislative council last month in protest at the dismissal of four colleagues in what they see as another push by Beijing to suppress democracy in the city.

The opposition has tried to take a stand against what many people in the former British colony see as Beijing's whittling away of freedoms, despite a promise of a high degree of autonomy.

China denies curbing rights and freedoms in the global financial hub, but authorities in Hong Kong and Beijing have moved swiftly to quash dissent after anti-government protests erupted last year and engulfed the city.

"My personal determination is that my exile will not be a migration. My only home is Hong Kong which is why I will not apply for asylum in any country," said Ted Hui, adding he would make it his "life mission" to fight for Hong Kong's freedom.

Ted Hui met with several Danish lawmakers this week, including the head of the Parliament's Foreign Policy Committee, but Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod and other government officials had declined to meet him, local media reported.

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