Mike Pompeo defends 12 Hong Kongers detained by China

HONG KONG: US secretary of state Mike Pompeo defended the 12 Hong Kong residents who have been detained by China whereas allegedly making an attempt to flee to Taiwan by boat in August, saying that they’d “dedicated no crime.”
“They merely consider that they’re worthy of freedom and the unalienable rights because of each individual,” Pompeo mentioned in digital remarks delivered on the John S McCain Freedom Award Ceremony on Wednesday. “They don’t seem to be alone in that perception. America stands with them.”
The 12, a few of whom are linked to anti-government protests and have been going through fees in Hong Kong previous to their arrest, are being held within the southern metropolis of Shenzhen the place they await prosecution.
Two of them are suspected of organizing an unlawful border crossing, whereas the opposite 10 are suspected of getting into mainland waters illegally.
The group was believed to have been headed for self-governed Taiwan once they have been arrested, following China’s imposition of a sweeping nationwide safety legislation concentrating on political expression in semi-autonomous Hong Kong. Taiwan is a well-liked alternative amongst Hong Kong residents trying to depart the town.
Relations say that they’re being held incommunicado and haven’t been granted entry to family-appointed legal professionals.
Pompeo’s remarks come as Hong Kong police final week arrested 9 others who’re suspected of helping the 12 to depart the town. The group of 9 is believed to have supplied lodging and transport.
Hong Kong chief Carrie Lam has repeatedly mentioned that the 12 folks detained should face the legislation in mainland China, as they have been arrested for offences there. Although Hong Kong is a part of China, it has a separate judicial and immigration system from the mainland, with separate border controls.

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