Hong Kong

Veteran Hong Kong democrat granted bail in major national security case

Reuters
Veteran Hong Kong democrat granted bail in major national security case

Former vice-chairman of the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China, Albert Ho leaves the High Court on bail, in Hong Kong, China, August 22, 2022.

REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

(1st UPDATE) High Court judge Johnny Chan referred to veteran pro-democracy politician Albert Ho's health in his judgement

HONG KONG – A Hong Kong court granted bail on Monday, August 22, to veteran pro-democracy politician Albert Ho after more than a year in detention on charges linked to a national security case.

Ho, 70, led the city’s largest opposition group, the Democratic Party, and is a lawyer who runs his own law firm.

He was earlier denied bail by a lower court magistrate. Media has reported that he is in poor health and has lung cancer.

Hong Kong court lifts reporting restriction on national security case

Hong Kong court lifts reporting restriction on national security case

High Court judge Johnny Chan referred to Ho’s health in his judgement, warning that if he committed any acts endangering national security “his bail will be revoked and he won’t be able to receive any kind of private medical care”.

His bail conditions include restrictions on speaking publicly or in the media on issues that might endanger national security, a ban on meeting foreign officials, and the surrender of all travel documents.

Ho stands accused with two others, Lee Cheuk-yan, 65 and Chow Hang-tung, 37, of inciting subversion of state power under a China-imposed national security law, given their leadership roles in a now disbanded group called the “Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China”.

The court was also given new details of the case, including an assertion by the prosecution that one of the Alliance’s “operational goals” was to “end one party dictatorship”, or to overthrow the Communist Party of China.

The Alliance was set up in 1989 after Chinese troops cracked down and killed pro-democracy demonstrators in and around Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.

For years it organized a candlelight vigil in Hong Kong on the anniversary of the crackdown to commemorate the victims.

The former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997 under a “one country, two systems” formula aimed at preserving various freedoms but pro-democracy politicians and activists say Beijing and the city’s government are undermining those freedoms, including with the national security law.

Chinese and Hong Kong officials deny that and say foreign interference is endangering the financial hub’s stability and prosperity.

Top court warns Hong Kong against risk of prosecuting ‘thought crimes’

Top court warns Hong Kong against risk of prosecuting ‘thought crimes’

– Rappler.com

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