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Canada must move quickly to stand up for democracy in Hong Kong, activists say

Last Updated Aug 11, 2020 at 4:02 pm MDT

Hong Kong media tycoon and newspaper founder Jimmy Lai, sits in a car as he leaves a police station after being bailed out in Hong Kong, Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2020. The rounding up of the paper’s founder Jimmy Lai, the previous day and a raid on its headquarters have reinforced fears that a new national security law will be used to suppress dissent in Hong Kong after months of anti-government protests. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

OTTAWA — Activists say Canada must swiftly censure China’s ruling Communist Party over its crackdown on democracy in Hong Kong.

Cherie Wong, executive director of Alliance Canada Hong Kong, urged Ottawa to work with other countries to invoke sanctions against Chinese officials for human rights violations.

Wong warned MPs on the House of Commons special committee on Canada-China relations today there is “a short window to act” before Beijing completely shuts down freedom of movement in Hong Kong.

Canada has expressed deep concern about China’s recent passage of national security legislation for Hong Kong, which critics say is being used to curb protest and free speech.

Ottawa says the legislation was enacted in a secretive process, without the participation of Hong Kong’s legislature, judiciary or people, and in violation of international obligations.

Ottawa has suspended the Canada-Hong Kong extradition treaty and says it will not permit export of sensitive military items to Hong Kong.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 11, 2020.

The Canadian Press