Taiwan will provide 'necessary assistance' to protesters in Hong Kong

WION Web Team New Delhi, India May 25, 2020, 02.32 PM(IST) Edited By: Bharat Sharma

This handout picture taken and released on May 20, 2020 by the Taiwan Presidential office shows Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen (C) arriving at the Presidential Office for her inauguration ceremony in Taipei Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

The people will receive “necessary assistance” from Taiwan, hinted President Tsai Ing-wen

As Hong Kong erupts into protest mode again to counter China’s national security law for the city, Taiwan has pledged support to the people of Hong Kong.

The people will receive “necessary assistance” from Taiwan, hinted President Tsai Ing-wen.

Over time, many pro-democracy protesters who fled Hong Kong found safe refuge in Taiwan, especially over the last 12 months.

Just yesterday, Hong Kong police fired tear gas and used water cannons against protesters who defied Beijing.

In pictures: Thousands take to streets in Hong Kong to oppose China's controversial law

Tsai called the proposed law a serious threat to the freedom and judicial independence guaranteed to Hong Kong. She further added that bullets are not the ideal tool for dealing with the crisis.

“In face of the changing situation, the international community has proactively stretched out a helping hand to Hong Kong’s people,” Tsai wrote in a Facebook post.

“[Taiwan will] even more proactively perfect and forge ahead with relevant support work, and provide Hong Kong’s people with necessary assistance,’” she added.

Even though Taiwan has no refugee protection laws that may be used to protect protesters, the country’s laws can intervene and help people whose safety and liberty are under threat.

Taipei and Beijing share a historically strained relationship, and most anti-China sentiment, like the ongoing Hong Kong protests have received support across Taiwan.

Hong Kong’s security chief on Monday referred to the protests as “terrorism”.

“Terrorism is growing in the city and activities which harm national security, such as ‘Hong Kong independence’, become more rampant,” Secretary for Security John Lee said in a statement.

Also read: China's proposed security law for Hong Kong could lead to US sanctions, says White House

“In just a few months, Hong Kong has changed from one of the safest cities in the world to a city shrouded in the shadow of violence,” he added.

China believes that Taiwan is indirectly supporting protesters in Hong Kong and has referred to Tsai as a “separatist” who seeks independence for Taiwan.

Tsai has asserted the freedom of Taiwan, calling it an independent country, with the Republic of China as its official name.

(With inputs from Reuters and AFP)