Jailed HK activist suspected of violating city's new security law

Joshua Wong, seen here earlier last month on his way to court, has been repeatedly detained for his role in organising pro-democracy rallies. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
Joshua Wong, seen here earlier last month on his way to court, has been repeatedly detained for his role in organising pro-democracy rallies. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

HONG KONG • Joshua Wong, one of Hong Kong's most prominent pro-democracy activists who is serving a 13½-month jail sentence for illegal assembly, is suspected of violating the city's national security law, according to a notice on his Facebook account.

Wong, 24, gave a police statement yesterday, the post said, without elaborating.

Police arrested 53 people in dawn raids on pro-democracy activists on Wednesday related to an unofficial vote to pick opposition candidates for an election last year.

The raid is the biggest crackdown since China imposed a security law in Hong Kong last year.

Democratic politicians held an unprecedented, unofficial and non-binding primary last July in which more than 600,000 people voted to pick who should run for a seat in the Legislative Council.

Wong, who won the primary vote, has been repeatedly detained for his role in organising pro-democracy rallies. He was also among 12 opposition candidates disqualified from running in the election, which has since been postponed. The government cited the coronavirus pandemic as a reason for the postponement.

Of Wednesday's arrests, the authorities cited the opposition's campaign to win a majority in the election with the view to pressure the government to enact democratic reforms by blocking its proposals in the city's assembly.

It was unclear who could run for the opposition in any future polls following the mass arrests.

REUTERS

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 08, 2021, with the headline Jailed HK activist suspected of violating city's new security law. Subscribe