Congressmen Sherman and Yoho Express Support for the People of Hong Kong
Congressman Brad Sherman (CA-30) and Congressman Ted Yoho (FL-03), the Chairman and Ranking Member of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific and Nonproliferation, today expressed support for the Hong Kong people and urged China not to intervene and forcibly suppress the protests.
“The Hong Kong people are peacefully expressing their opposition to China’s failure to live up to the promises it made about Hong Kong’s autonomy in the Joint Declaration and Hong Kong Basic Law,” Congressman Sherman said. “As a major power, China must listen to the people of Hong Kong and not violently suppress peaceful protests. The world is watching.”
“The people of Hong Kong have every reason to protest and they are exercising their right to assemble while they still can. Beijing has overstepped in Hong Kong, both by hand-picking Chief Executive Lam - who is by proxy a CCP supporter - and by rapidly introducing an extradition bill that had little to no public support” said Congressman Yoho. “This could be ended today by fully withdrawing the extradition bill instead of continually accusing the United States of meddling in these affairs.”
For months, Hong Kong has witnessed large demonstrations that began as a rebuke to proposed amendments to the city’s extradition laws, which would allow people in Hong Kong to be sent to the mainland for prosecution. Along with demanding the complete withdrawal of the proposed amendments to the extradition laws, the protestors have called on the Hong Kong government to allow for universal adult suffrage in its elections, an investigation into police actions during the protests, the declassification of the protests as riots, and for all charges against peaceful protestors to be dropped.
Hong Kong police have used increasingly excessive force against the protesters and China has begun amassing paramilitary police forces on Hong Kong’s borders. This has sparked concerns that Beijing may attempt to violently crackdown on the protests as it did in Tiananmen Square in 1989. Pro-Beijing media outlets have also targeted a U.S. diplomat and her family.
The United States-Hong Kong Policy Act of 1992 established that the United States is committed to supporting a “high degree of autonomy” for Hong Kong and underscores that the “human rights of the people of Hong Kong are of great importance to the United States.”