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Risch, Menendez Statements on Arrests of Jimmy Lai, Former Lawmakers in Hong Kong

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statements in response to the latest round of arrests of Hong Kong protesters, including prominent businessman and publisher Jimmy Lai:

“I am very concerned by the arrests of Jimmy Lai and several others last week,” said Risch. “The Hong Kong government has been actively arresting and charging protestors and others who support Hong Kong’s autonomy, but there has been no accountability for the actions of government actors. That is bad for the rule of law. These arrests are a reminder of the importance of standing up for Hong Kong’s autonomy, including the full implementation of the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act that became law last year.”

“Last week, we witnessed yet another sad chapter in what appears to be the steady erosion of Hong Kong’s autonomy with the arrest of Jimmy Lai, Lee Cheuk-yan and Yeung Sum, along with other leading voices for democracy and the freedom of expression,” said Menendez. “To be clear, these individuals were targeted and thrown in jail for doing nothing more than seeking to exercise their rights to free speech, assembly, association and the press under Hong Kong’s own Basic Law. Congress and the American people will continue to stand with the people of Hong Kong, and I call on the administration to fully implement the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act.”