Hong Kong pro-democracy leaders found guilty
by Onize Ohikere
Posted 4/09/19, 12:36 pm
A Hong Kong court on Tuesday convicted nine leaders of large-scale, pro-democracy protests in 2014 of public nuisance crimes, sparking renewed calls for the territory’s political freedom from China. The defendants, including Baptist Pastor Chu Yiu-ming, law professor Benny Tai, and retired sociology professor Chan Kin-man, organized the “Occupy Central” protests, also known as the “Umbrella Movement,” to demand that the semi-autonomous region elect its own leader. The demonstrations blocked Hong Kong’s financial district for nearly three months. Tai and Chan also faced additional charges of inciting others to cause a public nuisance. Each charge is punishable by up to seven years in prison.
More than 100 protesters, some holding symbolic yellow umbrellas, gathered outside the courthouse. Tai told supporters he believes the struggle for democracy will continue. “I have the confidence, many people today, with me together, we will continue to strive for Hong Kong’s democracy,” he said. “And we will persist, and we will not give up.”
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Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.