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Hong Kong Security Act: Democracy-promoting books from libraries

Demonstrators demonstrate against Hong Kong's national security law (07/01/20)

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Hong Kong protested the new law despite fears of severe penalties

Pro-democracy figures have been removed from public libraries in Hong Kong as part of a controversial new security law.

The works will be checked to see if they violate the new law, the agency that operates the libraries said.

Legislation targets secession, subversion and terrorism with punishment up to life imprisonment.

Opponents say it is undermining the freedoms of the territory as a semi-autonomous region of China. Beijing rejects this.

Hong Kong̵

7;s sovereignty was returned to China from Great Britain in 1997, and certain rights should be guaranteed for at least 50 years under the “One Country, Two Systems” agreement.

Since the security law came into effect on Tuesday, several leading democracy-friendly activists have resigned from their roles. One of them – former student leader and local legislator Nathan Law – has fled the area.

According to the South China Morning Post newspaper, at least nine books are no longer available or marked as “in progress”. These include books written or co-authored by Joshua Wong, a prominent pro-democracy activist, and pro-democracy politician Tanya Chan.

On Saturday, Mr. Wong tweeted that the new Hong Kong law “imposes a mainland-style censorship regime” and calls it “a step away from the actual ban on books.”

Beijing has rejected criticism of the law and said it was necessary to stop the type of mass democracy protests that have been observed in Hong Kong for much of 2019 and have sometimes led to very violent clashes between protesters and police.

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It has dismissed complaints from the UK and other western countries that it is violating guarantees that have been given to protect Hong Kong’s unique freedoms as interference in its internal affairs.

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Media signatureHong Kongers with British passports disagree on whether to leave the country

What is the security law?

The law is far-reaching and empowers Beijing to shape life in Hong Kong the way it has never been before. The law hates the central government of China and the crimes committed by the Hong Kong regional government.

It also enables closed-court trials, wiretapping of suspects, and the possibility of bringing suspects to trial in mainland China.

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Media signatureMany residents fear that the new law will end the principle of “one country, two systems”

Acts, including damage to public transport, that frequently occurred during the 2019 protests can be considered terrorism.

There are also concerns about online freedom, as internet service providers may have to provide data when requested by the police.

Hong Kong’s new security law

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