The McCain Institute supports the 14 Hong Kong prodemocracy leaders who were unjustly arrested last month and are scheduled to face trial on Monday, May 18. We call for a return to a transparent and accountable rule of law as it is imperative that the activists who were arrested are given a free and fair trial to demonstrate their innocence.

Among the arrested activists was Figo Chan, a prominent leader in the Civic and Human Rights Front and recipient of the 2019 John McCain Prize for Leadership and Public Service. His fearless and tireless work organizing prodemocracy protesters demonstrates Hong Kong’s desire for independence from China.

We also stand with the U.S. State Department, U.K. Foreign Office, and the European Parliament in condemning the oversteps of the Chinese government in Hong Kong since protests began over a year ago in May 2019. We are profoundly concerned about how Hong Kong’s authorities have elevated political allegiances to Beijing over the rule of law and fundamental human rights which impedes on the safety of all citizens.

The McCain Institute calls on Hong Kong’s authorities to respect internationally recognized human freedoms, including freedom of speech and assembly, rather than arresting their citizens for exercising these universal rights. We look forward to the day when Hong Kongers can live without fear of persecution from the Chinese government for expressing their desire for freedom and democracy.