The British government has granted asylum to Nathan Lu, a prominent Hong Kong activist and former lawmaker who fled the Chinese-held area last summer due to security concerns.
The activist left Hong Kong in June 2020 due to concerns about China’s national security law, according to News i, citing Sputnik news agency. According to it, activities related to terrorism and separatism are criminalized by China. The former lawmaker, along with several local pro-democracy activists in several Western countries, insisted the law undermines Hong Kong’s monopoly freedoms, which Beijing has denied. Hence, the activist went to London and became a supporter of the Hong Kong Democratic Movement.
“After several interviews over four months, the British Foreign Office informed me that my asylum application had been accepted,” Nathan Lou wrote in a Twitter message on Wednesday evening. The fact that I am being prosecuted under national security law shows that I will be severely politically persecuted if I return to Hong Kong, and that my work will not be safe.
The Hong Kong activist also expressed hope that Britain would help other asylum seekers from Hong Kong who have similar conditions but could not have sufficient evidence to substantiate their claims, and free them from “Beijing’s authoritarian repression”.
Meanwhile, seven activists in Hong Kong were convicted last week of organizing and participating in anti-government protests in 2019. Nathan Lu was one of the student leaders during the 2014 Hong Kong Umbrella protests.