The National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China on Tuesday decided to move forward with a plan to revise Hong Kong's electoral system that expands the number of seats in Hong Kong's legislature but limits its number of elected officials. China's top legislative body announced plans earlier this month to increase the number of seats in Hong Kong's legislature from 70 to 90. Thirty-five of the 70 legislative members currently in Hong Kong's Legislative Council are elected, but the new changes approved by China will reduce Hong Kong's number of elected officials to 20, according to the Associated Press. Officials announced last week that China's Standing Committee of the National People's Congress decided to proceed with debating the proposed amendments to Hong Kong's legislature on Monday and Tuesday of this week. The decision to move forward with the changes was made official on Tuesday. Newsweek reached out to Hong Kong's Legislative Council for comment … [Read more...] about Democracy in Hong Kong Dwindling as China Cuts Down on Elected Officials
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As Hong Kong media mogul Jimmy Lai is expected to appear in court on Thursday on fraud charges, experts worry that the ongoing crackdown on pro-democracy and opposition figures is likely to intensify in the semi-autonomous territory. Lai, along with two senior executives of his company Next Digital, was charged with suspicion of concealing and falsely representing the use of his office to his landlord. If convicted, Lai could be sentenced to up to seven years in jail. However, it won't be the first jail term that Lai will have received. Last month, he was handed 14 months in prison for participating in an unauthorized assembly in August 2019. His appearance comes just after a Hong Kong district court sentenced four prominent activists, including Joshua Wong, to several months in prison for their participation in a vigil held last year to commemorate the 1989 events at Beijing's Tiananmen Square. Watch video 02:49 Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong … [Read more...] about Hong Kong: Critics slam Beijing crackdown ahead of Jimmy Lai trial
HONG KONG: The United States said on Thursday (Apr 29) it was "deeply concerned" by a new Hong Kong immigration law which includes powers to stop people leaving the city, raising fears Chinese mainland-style exit bans could be deployed there. The law was passed on Wednesday by a city legislature now devoid of opposition, as Beijing seeks to quash dissent and make the semi-autonomous city more like the authoritarian mainland following huge and often violent democracy protests. It grants the immigration chief powers to bar people from boarding planes to and from the city. READ: Hong Kong passes immigration Bill with 'exit ban' powers "We are aware of this legislation and share widespread concerns in Hong Kong about its content, potential uses, and lack of oversight or accountability," a State Department spokesperson said in a statement on Thursday. "We have long standing concerns about the PRC's arbitrary use of exit bans without due process of law, including against … [Read more...] about US sounds alarm over Hong Kong ‘exit ban’ fears
A new Hong Kong public school textbook uses an image depicting a “gun-toting Mickey Mouse” to illustrate how multinational corporations enter developing countries and “invade local cultures,” the South China Morning Post ( SCMP ) reported Thursday. “[A]n image in new teaching materials to be used in Hong Kong’s schools … depicts Mickey Mouse and Goofy lookalikes in military uniforms, fighter planes dropping hamburgers instead of bombs, and evil versions of McDonald’s characters Ronald McDonald and Grimace,” according to the Hong Kong-based SCMP . “Accompanying the cartoon of the cultural invasion are teaching guidelines suggesting pupils can learn how multinational corporations entering local markets in developing countries have invaded local cultures. The message is largely one of anti-cultural imperialism,” SCMP reported after reviewing a preview of the high school textbook. The book chapter in which the cartoon is featured “encouraged pupils to discuss Western … [Read more...] about Hong Kong Textbook Depicts ‘Gun-Toting Mickey Mouse’ as U.S. Invader
IN a casual conversation last weekend, it turned out a diplomat due to retire later this year had originally intended to remain in Hong Kong and join the private sector. But now, he said, “That is clearly impossible.” Hong Kong is changing so much that it is quickly becoming unrecognizable. Its still sizable expatriate community includes many people who came intending to stay for two or three years and ended up staying a lifetime. But with China tightening its grip over the former British colony, Hong Kong is losing much of its old attraction. As for the 7.5 million residents, considerably more than 100,000 are uprooting themselves this year and moving, primarily to Britain, which has offered to take about 5.5 million of the territory’s 7.5 million people but also to other countries, such as Canada and Australia, which have put out the welcome mat for Hong Kong. At almost every dinner, the conversation inevitably turns to the question of whether to stay or go and if it is go, the … [Read more...] about Hong Kong’s fading attraction: Will the new ‘Carrie Lam Show’ help?