Hong Kong arrests 2 disqualified lawmakers over oath fracas

Hong Kong arrests 2 disqualified lawmakers over oath fracas

Hong Kong police on Wednesday arrested two pro-independence lawmakers who were disqualified in a dispute over their oaths, in the latest round of legal action against activists involved in the Chinese territory’s pro-democracy movement.

Sixtus Leung and Yau Wai-ching of the Youngspiration party were arrested and questioned at a police station for several hours before being released on bail.

They told reporters they were charged with unlawful assembly and attempted forcible entry and must report to court on Friday.

The two young activists angered Hong Kong’s Beijing-backed government when they used their swearing-in ceremony in October to stage an apparent protest by inserting anti-China insults into their oaths.

Their attempts to enter the legislature during subsequent sessions to take their oaths properly descended into chaos when they were barred from the chamber while awaiting a court ruling, which later disqualified them from office.

Leung and Yau were part of a new wave of lawmakers advocating greater separation from the mainland who were newly elected to office last year amid a rising tide of anti-China sentiment in Hong Kong, where fears are rising that Beijing is tightening its grip on the semiautonomous city.

Three former assistants were also arrested. Leung said the charges, which relate to events on Nov. 2, were “ridiculous.”

On that day, they scuffled with guards as they barged into the chamber, leaving the council session in disarray.

“We are still lawmakers at that time when we wanted to get into the chamber. Why is it unlawful?” he said.

The two said the charges were politically motivated.

“We are not afraid of this suppression and we will persist in our beliefs,” Yau said.

The Hong Kong government is pursuing cases against a number of other activists.

Last month police arrested nine people, including university professors, former student leaders and lawmakers, on public nuisance charges for their involvement in the “Umbrella Movement” protests. The 79-day movement ended more than two years ago after protesters failed to win concessions over electoral curbs.

The government is also trying to disqualify four other pro-democracy lawmakers who it says took their oaths improperly.

Individual cases include another lawmaker charged earlier this month with desecrating the Chinese and Hong Kong flags after he inverted some on the desks of pro-government members during one of the chamber’s chaotic sessions last year.

Kelvin Chan, The Associated Press

Just Posted

Terrace RCMP arrest Kitimat man for drug trafficking

A police investigation has led to the arrest of a Kitimat man… Continue reading

Terrace Fire Department announces new training program, increased calls in year-end report

All firefighters in Terrace are expected to complete training by the end of April 2018.

UPDATE: Prince Rupert woman killed in logging truck collision

Empty logging truck west of Terrace struck moose before colliding with the eastbound SUV

David Edwardsen sentenced to eight years in jail

Sentencing result of 14 drug and firearms convictions

Taking a virtual walk across Canada

The Kermode Friendship Society challenged their staff to participate in this year’s competition, which aims to promote physical activity, networking, and friendly competition.

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

#Metoo movement causing confusion in many men, fear of missteps with women: experts

Being painted by the same sweeping brush as those alleged to have mistreated women has angered men

Liberals to dig deeper, aim higher on gender equality in 2018 federal budget

Finance Minister Bill Morneau said the budget would include measures to boost women in the workforce

Body of missing skier found

Man’s truck found in Revelstoke Mountain Resort’s parking lot covered in ‘several days’ snow’

Thrilling finish to 59th All Native Tournament

Kitamaat, Hydaburg, Port Simpson and Kitkatla win championships in 2018 All Native Tournament

B.C. VIEWS: Subsidy supercluster settles in B.C.

Ottawa, Victoria add to their overlapping ‘innovation’ budgets

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Canada’s first ever men’s ski slopestyle medal

Men’s hockey team beats South Korea and women’s curling reverses losing streak

Most Read