Hong Kong’s Exiled Dissidents Become Fugitives From China

Hong Kong’s Exiled Dissidents Become Fugitives From China

HONG KONG—Samuel Chu wasn’t living in his native Hong Kong when protests were raging last year against Beijing’s increasingly heavy-handed rule. He was in the U.S., pushing Congress to punish China for eroding the city’s autonomy. Mr. Chu, a naturalized American citizen of almost 25 years, is now reportedly on a wanted list of six fugitives, including five other exiled Hong Kong activists, who are being sought under China’s new national-security law. “The fact that they can issue this threat makes it clear that it doesn’t matter who you are and where you are, this is what the intention of the law is,” said the 42-year-old Mr. Chu. As local opposition groups are silenced under Beijing’s tightening grip, Hong Kong and Chinese authorities are facing a new class of activists like Mr. Chu, who are fighting from a distance. Overseas dissidents aren’t unusual under repressive regimes, but were almost unheard of in Hong Kong until last year. China’s national-security law, imposed on June 30, has led to the arrest of opposition figures in Hong Kong and curbed people’s willingness to speak out against China. Elections set for next month that pro-democracy groups looked to as one of the only remaining outlets for expressing anger against Beijing have been postponed for a year, with Hong Kong authorities citing the risks from the coronavirus pandemic. The law has bolstered the ranks of overseas dissidents whose political activity threatens to cut them off from their native city ...
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