Support for Carrie Lam drops as 10 of the 12 Guangdong detainees are indicted
The 12 are accused of illegally crossing the Chinese border. The two underage prisoners are still waiting for their formal indictment. The popularity of Hong Kong’s chief executive drops by 5 per cent in less than a month. Public satisfaction with the rule of law is also decreasing. People feel uncomfortable with the handling of the pandemic and the effects of the security law.
Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Shenzhen Yantian District People’s Procuratorate formally indicted 10 of the 12 pro-democracy activists held in mainland China for more than three months.
Two of them are accused of organising the illegal border crossing whilst the other eight will go on trial for illegally crossing the border; no decision has been made for the last two underage suspects.
Last August, the Chinese coast guard intercepted the speedboat carrying the 12 Hong Kong citizens off the coast of Guangdong.
According to unofficial reports, the 12 were on their way to Taiwan to avoid prosecution under Hong Kong’s new security law for participating in pro-democracy demonstrations last year.
Since they were detained, the Chinese government has prevented the 12 from seeing relatives and rejected the lawyers chosen by the families.
The case has been very controversial in the former British colony, which has been on the edge for quite a while, as evinced by the results of a recent survey.
The Hong Kong Public Opinion Program (HKPOP) yesterday released the results of a public opinion poll it conducted with a thousand Hong Kong residents. It shows that Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s popularity has dropped by 5 per cent to 30 .6 per cent over the previous survey.
All the indicators show widespread dissatisfaction with the current situation in Hong Kong. On the subject of freedom, Hong Kong scored only 4.68 on a scale of 1 to 10, 4.01 for the rule of law, and 3.85 for the degree of democracy.
For observers, such negative results are directly correlated to the crackdown against the pro-democracy movement.
The HKPOP research also highlights a sense of dissatisfaction that goes beyond the failure to protect freedom and personal rights. The score for “stability” is 4.17 and drops to 4.11 regarding the city’s “prosperity”.
These numbers have also been influenced by dissatisfaction with the authorities’ handling of the pandemic, which contradict what Chief Executive Carrie Lam has said, namely that Beijing’s new security law had improved the city’s economy.