HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong Democrat activist Nathan La said on Monday he had applied for political asylum in Britain, which could spark tensions with China if a petition is filed.
Mr. La, 27, fled to London in June, shortly before a new national security law was passed for Hong Kong Powers to alleviate disagreement After months of fierce anti-government protests.
Mr. La gained prominence in Hong Kong as a student leader in 2014, calling for free elections in the semi-Chinese region through street demonstrations and sit-ins. Two years later, at the age of 23, he became the city’s youngest elected legislator He was disqualified Changed his pledge for office the following year.
Mr. He was jailed in 2017 On charges of inciting street protests three years ago. His closest ally, Joshua Wong, He was sentenced to more than a year in prison At a demonstration in 2019 this month, he faces additional charges over his activity.
“I hope my presence serves as a warning to remind people of the danger the CCP poses to our shared democratic values,” he said. An open article He sought his asylum in The Guardian on Monday, citing the Chinese Communist Party.
Mr. seeking asylum in Britain. Lavin’s petition comes at a time when China is trying to form new trade alliances with the United Kingdom European union Its confrontational relationship with the United States is not expected to improve significantly under the Biden administration. Imposed by the United States Travel restrictions and sanctions On several high-ranking government officials in connection with the continued repression of the opposition in Hong Kong.
In July, the Chinese state media reported that Mr. La and five Hong Kong activists were accused of collaborating with foreign forces and listed as fugitives under the Defense Act, which applies to crimes committed outside of China. In October, Hong Kong police Issued an arrest warrant Mr. He attended a demonstration in La City in June before leaving the city.
He did not disclose his whereabouts until a few weeks after leaving Hong Kong due to security concerns. Law said he was ready for life in exile and had severed ties with his family to avoid trapping them.
“Who can enjoy freedom from fear in the face of China’s powerful political machine?” He Tweeted In July. “We can choose how to respond to this fear.”
As Hong Kong protesters left the city, China warned other countries against granting asylum to what some officials described as “violent criminals.”
In October, China’s ambassador to Canada, Kang Pei, asked Canadian officials to consider the “good health and safety” of Canadian passport holders in Hong Kong.
Despite China’s angry warnings, Britain has allowed nearly three million people from its former territory to live and work in the country on the path to citizenship. British Home Secretary Priti Patel on December 10 and Mr Promised to protect The freedoms of the people from the former British colony.