President Joe Biden has signed a memorandum granting Hong Kong residents a temporary safe haven in the United States while China’s crackdown has undermined democracy in the region. The memorandum postpones the removal for the next 18 months.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement that the memorandum Orders “the postponement of the deportation of certain Hong Kong residents who are in the United States to give them a temporary safe haven.”
Psaki said the memorandum “Demonstrates President Biden’s strong support for the people of Hong Kong in the face of ongoing repression by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and makes it clear that we will not stand idly by when the PRC breaks its promises to Hong Kong and the international community.”
“Given the politically motivated arrests and trials, the silence of the media and the shrinking space for elections and democratic opposition, we will continue to take steps to support the people of Hong Kong,” she added.
The political situation in Hong Kong has largely deteriorated since then the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress passed the controversial Hong Kong’s national security law criminalizing any activity that could pose a “threat” to national security.
“The Chinese authorities enforced the law with no accountability or transparency: it was passed just weeks after its initial announcement, circumventing local Hong Kong law, and the text was kept secret from the public and allegedly even the Hong Kong government until it was finished enacted ”, as stated in an Amnesty International report.
Thousands have fled political repression in Hong Kong since Beijing cracked down on pro-democracy protesters and made widespread arrests.
Alan is a writer, editor, and news junkie from New York.