Civics: China Arrests Hong Kong Journalists for Violating Law That Was Praised in New York Times Op-Ed

Chuck Ross:

Authorities in Hong Kong this week used a Chinese national security law defended in the New York Times to arrest five editors at a newspaper critical of Beijing.

Police raided the offices of Apple Daily and arrested the editors for violating a national security law imposed last year that makes it illegal to call for sanctions against China. In October 2020, Regina Ip, a Hong Kong official known to have close ties to Beijing, defended the law in New York Times op-ed. Ip credited the measure for ending protests in Hong Kong, which she claimed had devolved into violence.

“The scale and frequency of antigovernment protests has now subsided — thanks to a national security law for Hong Kong promulgated in Beijing on June 30,” she wrote in the Times.

The arrests come as the Chinese government cracks down on media outlets and activists who support the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong. Police arrested Apple Daily founder Jimmy Lai last year on charges under the national security law. Lai was convicted this year on fraud charges that Western observers have claimed were fabricated against him because of his staunch opposition to the Chinese Communist Party.