HONG KONG — A Hong Kong group that organizes vigils for the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown mentioned a number of of its leaders had been arrested on Wednesday after it refused to supply info for a police investigation.
The group, the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China, mentioned the police had sought particulars about its funding and membership for an inquiry into whether or not it was performing in collusion with overseas powers, a violation of the town’s nationwide safety regulation.
Under the regulation, which was imposed by Beijing on Hong Kong final yr, the police have broad powers to demand info from teams and people.
At least 4 members of the group had been detained, together with its vice chairwoman, Chow Hang Tung.
On Sunday, chatting with reporters, Ms. Chow rejected any suggestion that the group was performing on behalf of overseas powers. “If you must say that we are agents of anything, we are the agents of the Hong Kong people’s conscience,” she mentioned.
Ms. Chow mentioned the police had requested info courting to the group’s founding in 1989, throughout the Tiananmen protest motion, however that they had offered no rationalization for why the group was suspected of violating the regulation.
“This is absurd and an abuse of power,” Ms. Chow mentioned.
“They are trying to intimidate the people who participate in social movements,” she added. “We will now clearly state that this sort of intimidation will stop at us. We will not transmit that fear through our compliance.”
Chris Tang, Hong Kong’s safety secretary, mentioned on Tuesday that he believed the main points of any safety regulation violations by the group would ultimately be made public in courtroom if the authorities pursued fees.
“Foreign agents include those who receive money support from overseas political parties or political organizations, and then act to the benefit of those foreign organizations,” he mentioned. “I think it’s very clearly stated in the law.”
The Hong Kong Alliance hosts an annual vigil in Victoria Park on Hong Kong Island to recollect these killed throughout the crackdown on the Tiananmen protest motion in 1989. The Chinese navy killed a whole bunch or probably hundreds of demonstrators.
The vigil usually attracted hundreds of individuals. Some joined final yr regardless of an official ban on gatherings as a result of of the pandemic. Efforts to mark the anniversary within the park this yr had been largely blocked by an unlimited police presence.