As Freedoms Shrink in Hong Kong, One Christian Media Editor Explains Why He Stays

Christian journalism has become even more important after the government passed a tough new national security law.

Editor’s Note: Hong Kong officials unanimously passed its own version of a national security law Tuesday that could put people found guilty of political crimes, such as treason or external interference, in prison for life.

Article 23 of the Basic Law, Hong Kong’s mini-constitution, mandates the enactment of a national security law, which locals have protested in the past over fears that it could curtail freedoms. Now with a pro-Beijing parliament, the bill was passed at record speed.

John Lee, the city’s top leader, said the new law was needed to close gaps in the existing national security law that Beijing imposed on Hong Kong in 2020. He hailed its passage as “a historic moment Hong Kong people have been waiting for over 26 years.”

A coalition of 77 international parliamentarians and public figures, including Hong Kong’s last British Gov. Chris Patten and US Sen. Marco Rubio, have issued a statement condemning the Article 23 legislation, calling it a “flagrant breach” of the Basic Law, the Sino-British Joint Declaration, and international human rights law.

While many Hong Kongers have left the city, others, like Lo Man Wai, editor in chief of the Christian Times newspaper, have decided to stay. He writes here about his work in Hong Kong as the city undergoes unprecedented changes.

In the past four years since the implementation of the first national security law, Hong Kong has experienced a seismic shift. Many citizens who have been devoted to this city for decades, including prominent pro-democracy activists, journalists, opinion leaders, social workers, and politicians, have disappeared from the public sphere. Some have been detained; others are in exile. Still others remain …

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