European Interest

EP: The Hong Kong government must withdraw the controversial extradition bill

Flickr/Studio Incendo/CC BY 2.0
People protests in Hong Kong.

On Thursday, the European Parliament adopted three resolutions taking stock of the human rights situation in Hong Kong.

The European Parliament calls on the Hong Kong government (HKSAR) to withdraw the proposed and highly controversial amendments to its extradition law, which has caused people in Hong Kong to take to the streets in unprecedented numbers. They fear the new bill could facilitate people being subjected to rendition to China for political reasons.

MEPs also call on the Hong Kong authorities to immediately release and drop all charges against the peaceful protesters and for an independent and impartial investigation into the use of force by the Hong Kong police against the crowds. They stress that the EU shares many of the concerns raised by the citizens of Hong Kong, since the bill has far-reaching consequences for the territory and its people, for the EU and for foreign citizens, as well as for business confidence in Hong Kong.

The text was adopted by a show of hands and will be available in full here (18.07.2019).

“China must continue to respect Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy and its rights and freedoms as part of the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ model.  The millions of people on the streets since protests kicked off in June have made it abundantly clear that the extradition bill would be a serious breach of Hong Kong’s freedoms. Hong Kong’s CEO Carrie Lam must now listen to the will of the people and withdraw the bill completely,” said the co-chairs of the European Green Party Reinhard Bütikofer and Monica Frassoni.

“The firing of rubber bullets and mass detention of peaceful protestors by the police was an extreme use of force and must immediately be subject to an independent investigation. Hong Kong’s Basic Law still guarantees freedom of speech, association and assembly even if China wants to bring the special administrative region under its orbit of control,” they added.

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