Hong Kong: Pro-Democracy Activists

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons on 10th April 2019.

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Photo of Stephen Gethins Stephen Gethins Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

May I express my solidarity with Helen Goodman and in particular her constituency staff? I also thank Mr Carmichael for raising this important matter. We share his concerns about democracy and human rights. As the Minister said, the UK has a particular responsibility for Hong Kong in our ongoing commitment to democracy and the rule of law. Amnesty International has said that this case is

“a crushing blow for freedom of expression and peaceful protest in Hong Kong.”

Does the Minister agree that judicial independence is absolutely critical to commercial investment and certainty, and that it is in the interests of China as well? Secondly, what Hong Kong-related discussions have he and his colleagues had with regard to trade talks, and what reassurances have Ministers sought over China’s commitment to Hong Kong’s autonomy and the independence of the legal system?