Tony Chung: Hong Kong activist detained near US embassy charged

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Tony Chung, Hong Kong pro-democracy scholar activistHong Kong teen activist Tony Chung has been charged below a brand new nationwide safety legislation, simply days after he was detained exterior the US consulate.Mr Chung, 19, had reportedly deliberate to enter the consulate and declare asylum.He faces potential life imprisonment if discovered responsible of secession, conspiracy to publish seditious content material, and cash laundering.Mr Chung, the second individual to be charged below the legislation, was denied bail by the courtroom.The controversial legislation was imposed by China on Hong Kong in June, making it simpler to punish protesters and decreasing the town’s autonomy.The legislation is wide-ranging and provides Beijing in depth powers which it by no means had earlier than to form life within the territory.Critics say the legislation erodes the town’s judicial independence and rights like freedom of speech, and that it has created a way of fear and uncertainty in Hong Kong.What can we learn about his detention?According to the South China Morning Post, Mr Chung was detained on Tuesday morning at a espresso store reverse the US consulate.UK-based activist group Friends of Hong Kong mentioned he had deliberate to enter and declare asylum. Instead, footage taken from near the consulate confirmed him being carried away by plain-clothes police.Mr Chung, a former member of pro-independence group Studentlocalism, had beforehand mentioned that life below the brand new legislation had grow to be extra restrictive for him and different activists.He advised BBC Chinese in a latest interview that he felt he couldn’t speak or act freely, and needed to “worry about the red lines all the time”.But he additionally mentioned activists had not given up combating and that “at the right moment, we will come out to protest again”.”Yes we lose at this moment. But the road to democracy is always long.”He will stay in custody till his subsequent courtroom look on 7 January subsequent yr.What is Hong Kong’s new safety legislation?Hong Kong’s nationwide safety legislation was imposed by Beijing in June after months of giant pro-democracy protests final yr towards an extradition invoice.Story continuesThe new legislation makes secession, subversion of the central authorities, terrorism or collusion with international forces punishable by as much as life in jail.In July, a number of have been arrested below the brand new powers, together with a person carrying a “Hong Kong Independence” flag.Critics say it successfully places an finish to the freedoms assured by Beijing for 50 years after British rule led to Hong Kong in 1997, however China says it can return stability to the town.After the passing of the safety legislation, the UK’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson mentioned he would provide as much as three million Hong Kong residents an opportunity to settle within the UK and finally apply for citizenship.China has condemned this, saying it could take countermeasures towards the UK ought to it grant residency to Hong Kong residents.