“Listing” may become a new normal, Hong Kong people’s freedom of demonstration and assembly is no longer
After the participants in the Tseung Kwan O reclamation parade were required to wear neck tags, there were 10 parades and rallies in Hong Kong on Sunday (2nd) that received a notice of no objection from the police, and the police also imposed different restrictions.
According to Hong Kong media reports, at least 6 of the 10 parades were religious in nature, and some were Easter celebrations or related to fundraising. The police impose national security clauses on every activity, stating that it must comply with the “Hong Kong National Security Law” and ensure that it will not constitute a detriment to national security.
The police also imposed clothing restrictions on some activities. For example, in the “Welcome to the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou” rally and parade hosted by the Hangzhou Travelers Association in Hong Kong, the police claimed that in order to prevent “lawless elements from mixing with public gatherings and public Disturbing public order or even engaging in illegal and violent acts”, all participants are required to wear T-shirts and identification stickers on their bodies.
The Harbourfront Affairs Committee of the Development Bureau held a hat parade to celebrate Easter, and the police also required all participants to wear the hats and badges provided by the organizer.
In addition, at least 5 activities were required by the police to obey the “anti-mask law” and not to wear masks.
Hong Kong used to be known as the “City of Parades”. Every year, there are large and small parades. Among them, the New Year’s Day parade, the “June 4th” rally and the July 1st handover parade, the number of people can reach as high as one million. Global attention. However, after the national security law took effect, the police imposed various restrictions on the demonstrations that issued the notice of no objection, which caused an uproar in the outside world.
Ren Jianfeng, a senior researcher at the Asian Law Center of Georgetown University in the United States and a Hong Kong lawyer, told the Central News Agency that there are many demonstrations and rallies about people’s livelihood in mainland China, such as the “white hair movement” triggered by the medical insurance reform earlier, and the authorities still allow large numbers of people to gather To express their appeal, Hong Kong’s current parade restrictions are more stringent than those in mainland China. “With the national security law as a precious sword, I don’t know if there will be real parades in the future.”
Scholar Zhong Jianhua analyzed BBC Chinese and pointed out that the relevant restrictive measures will become the norm, and the purpose is to change the past parade culture in Hong Kong, that is, to gradually cultivate a kind of cognition, to accept that the police will read your slogans, ask for a listing, and even require your real name . In this way, political demands cannot be expressed without hesitation, and there will be no demonstrations against the government, only those activities that echo the government.
Last week, during the rally held by the “Tseung Kwan O Metropolitan Owners’ Committee” against the government’s land reclamation, the police imposed restrictions such as requiring participants to hang number plates on their necks and not to wear masks, which was severely criticized by the public.
The organizer of the parade, Chen Zhanjun, said that the police’s restrictive measures against the parade were extremely insulting. He even described wearing neck tags as “Jews wearing armbands”, which made the participants feel “labeled and kept in captivity”, highlighting the absurdity of Hong Kong. He also pointed out that if there are harsh conditions in the future, there will be no more parades.
The Secretary for Security, Tang Bingqiang, recently responded to outside criticism of restrictions on demonstrations such as “listing” and said that some people in the society have stirred up citizens’ dissatisfaction and hatred against the government, “hoping to endanger national security and to make Hong Kong no longer peaceful.”
However, Deng Bingqiang’s statement was refuted by netizens.
Some netizens pointed out, “Except for left (except) cats and dogs, it is really rare to wear a badge when walking on the street (going to the street), and it is not a foreign job (not going to work)…you yourself Don’t like to hang up a “warrant card” to do things wildly (you police don’t like to hang up a warrant card to do things). “
Some netizens also said, “A label can say (say) ‘hope to endanger national security’, a country is good for glass.”
100,000 people signed “cyber bullying”?Donnie Yen makes hot remarks again
Earlier, Donnie Yen criticized the “anti-extradition movement” as a “riot”, triggering 100,000 signatures requesting the Oscar organizers to disqualify him from the awards ceremony. In a recent interview, he said that the joint signature was cyberbullying against him, which once again aroused criticism from the outside world.
The well-known American entertainment magazine “Variety” recently published an exclusive interview with Donnie Yen. The interview was arranged on the eve of the Oscars. Donnie Yen called the “anti-extradition movement” in Hong Kong in 2019 a “riot” and caused resentment among Hong Kong people. People signed a boycott.
The article stated that Donnie Yen responded to the incident by saying: “I can love my own culture. Love my own country. Why can’t I be patriotic?” and criticized the co-signation as cyberbullying and cancel culture, which must be stopped. “You can’t control other people’s thoughts, and it’s hypocritical to ask others to shut up.”
The initiator of the joint signature “Go to Tang” Tang Weixiong pointed out that the incident just shows that Donnie Yen does not respect and does not understand the democratic system, that is, everyone has the freedom to express their opinions.
Tang Weixiong said that the joint signature was not intended to silence Donnie Yen, and it never stopped him from being “patriotic”. It just wanted to express his opposition to Donnie Yen’s remarks that he called the struggle for democracy and freedom a “riot”. It is not cyberbullying at all.
Tang Weixiong also pointed out that the country supported by Donnie Yen has detained many dissidents. The film industry he is in, including Hong Kong, has not been given the freedom to create, release, and be watched. These are the real “requirements” Others shut up” and cancel culture. I hope that the screening will amplify my sense of self. If you have time, it is better to pay attention to those who are really silenced.
In addition, regarding the failure of the joint signature to prevent Donnie Yen from attending the Oscars as a guest, Tang Weixiong believes that the event successfully brought the issue of Hong Kong’s human rights to the international arena. Although it is not perfect, it has achieved a certain effect.
Many netizens also responded to Donnie Yen’s remarks.
Some netizens said, “I don’t think this is patriotism, it’s patriotism. Don’t insult the word patriotism.”
Another netizen pointed out, “Falling in love with a perverted demon… really deserves to be called ‘the strongest in the universe’.”
Another netizen quoted Lu Xun’s famous saying, “Although being a slave is unfortunate, it is not terrible, because you know the struggle, after all, there is still hope to break free; if you find beauty in the life of slaves, admire, and be intoxicated, you will be a slave forever.” !”
The Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office “joined the party” and the Liaison Office no longer played the role of a “bridge”
Beijing announced plans last month to adjust the organizational structure for handling Hong Kong affairs. Hong Kong media pointed out that under this new structure, the Beijing Liaison Office in Hong Kong no longer acts as a “bridge” between the central government and Hong Kong.
Ming Pao published an article on the 3rd stating that the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, which replaced the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office of the State Council of the Communist Party of China, is actually the administrative body of the Central Leading Group for Hong Kong and Macau Affairs and implements the decisions of the leading group.
The article also said that in the past, the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong not only liaised with all walks of life, but also served as Beijing’s representative office in Hong Kong. To some extent, it played the role of a “bridge” between Beijing and Hong Kong. However, under the new structure, the role of the “bridge” of the Liaison Office has disappeared. In the future, it will only “focus more on the work of connecting all sectors of society in Hong Kong and supporting the SAR government.” In the future, the Hong Kong government will only communicate with Beijing directly through the Central Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office.
The article also quoted a person familiar with the mainland’s political situation as saying that this structural adjustment is actually an “institutionalization” of Beijing’s actual operations on Hong Kong and Macau since 2020.
The CCP’s official media, Xinhua News Agency, announced the so-called “Party and State Institutional Reform Plan” on the 16th of last month, no longer retaining the separate Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office of the State Council, but establishing the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, “as the party’s central office.”
Some commentators pointed out that this change, the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office is “upgraded” in name, but in essence it is to facilitate the implementation of the “firm control of Hong Kong’s overall governance” passed by the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, and it will also facilitate policy coordination and resource allocation.
There are also comments that the change is an approach of the CCP to “strengthen the party and weaken the government”, and at the same time, it will help Beijing bypass the restrictions of the “Basic Law” to intervene in Hong Kong affairs.
Survey: US investment sentiment in Hong Kong declines
The latest member survey of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong shows that the proportion of respondents who will reduce investment in Hong Kong in the next two years has risen sharply to 25%, while those who continue to use Hong Kong as their Asia-Pacific headquarters have plummeted to 35%, indicating that the scale of American businesses in Hong Kong is bound to increase. reduce.
The survey was conducted from January to February this year, and about one adult of the 1,300 members of the American Chamber of Commerce responded. The results show that respondents are cautiously optimistic that Hong Kong’s prospects for the coming year will improve compared with last year.
However, the proportion of respondents who said they would reduce investment in Hong Kong increased from 15% last year to 25%. More than half of the interviewed members said that they would continue to use Hong Kong as their global or regional headquarters, but the percentage of members using Hong Kong as their Asia-Pacific headquarters dropped from 42% last year to 35%.
The survey also shows that the continued tension between China and the United States is regarded as the biggest business challenge this year, and the proportion of American businessmen who are pessimistic has also increased; while overseas perceptions of Hong Kong, the weakening global economy, and the retention and attraction of talents , The uncertainty of Hong Kong’s political and legal norms, etc., also bring uncertainty to the operation.
RFI reported that the survey by the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong was the latest among the three regions, and the investment intentions of American companies in Hong Kong were also the worst.
According to the “2023 Business Climate Survey” released by the American Chamber of Commerce in Taiwan in mid-February this year, 88% of the surveyed members indicated that they planned to maintain or expand their investment in Taiwan, while 13% said they planned to reduce their investment.
According to a survey report released by the American Chamber of Commerce in China on March 1, 45% of American businessmen surveyed estimated that China’s investment and business environment will continue to deteriorate, more than double the previous ratio; in addition, as high as 46% The interviewed American companies said that they have no plans to expand in China this year, and 9% of the interviewed American companies intend to reduce their investment in China.