US lawmakers nominate Hong Kong democracy movement for Nobel

WION Web Team
Washington, DC, United States of America Published: Feb 03, 2021, 11:13 PM(IST)

Hong Kong democracy movement Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Beijing last year imposed a tough security law that it has used to clamp down on dissent after the unrest in the financial hub, which was promised a separate system before Britain handed the territory back to China in 1997.

US lawmakers have nominated Hong Kong's pro-democracy movement for the Nobel Peace Prize.

In a letter to the Nobel Committee submitted by the February 1 deadline and released Wednesday, nine lawmakers across party lines called the campaigners a global inspiration as they endure a crackdown by Beijing, citing the estimate that more than two million took to the streets on June 16, 2019.

With Hong Kong having a population of 7.5 million, it amounts to "one of the largest mass protests in history," said the letter, led by Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Democratic Representative Jim McGovern, co-chairs of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China that assesses human rights.

"This prize would honour their bravery and determination that have inspired the world," they wrote.

"We hope that the Nobel Committee will continue to shine a light on those struggling for peace and human rights in China and we believe the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong is deserving of recognition this year."

The lawmakers said they expected more Hong Kong democracy activists to be convicted in the coming months "for the sole reason of peacefully expressing their political views."

Beijing last year imposed a tough security law that it has used to clamp down on dissent after the unrest in the financial hub, which was promised a separate system before Britain handed the territory back to China in 1997.

Among those who have been rounded up include 24-year-old Joshua Wong, one of the city's most recognisable democracy advocates, who has been charged with subversion.

The lawmakers recommended that the prize go broadly to all who have pushed for human rights and democracy in Hong Kong since 1997.

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