Image: protest leaders Joshua Wong and Nathan Law (sourced)
Three Hong Kong student protest leaders have avoided prison time for leading or encouraging an illegal rally that sparked huge pro-democracy street protests two years ago.
A magistrate sentenced Joshua Wong and Nathan Law to community service on Monday while a third activist, Alex Chow, received a suspended sentence.
Nineteen-year-old Wong became the most high-profile leader of the protests that erupted in late September 2014, which marked the former British colony’s most turbulent period since China took control in 1997.
Youthful protesters occupied key thoroughfares for 11 weeks to press demands for unrestricted elections for the city’s top leader.
Wong and Law were found guilty last month of taking part in an unlawful assembly. Wong was given 120 hours of community service by Magistrate June Cheung while the 23-year-old Law received 80 hours.
Chow, who was found guilty of inciting others to join an unlawful assembly, was also initially given 120 hours of community service. However, because the 25-year-old is due to start a year-long master’s program at the London School of Economics in September, he would be unlikely to complete it so the magistrate instead gave him a three-week prison sentence, suspended for a year.
Student leaders and rights groups have slammed the prosecutions for being politically motivated.
Wong told reporters outside court that he would “still commit civil disobedience through non-violent direct action to show my commitment and persistence to fight for human rights, democracy and freedom in Hong Kong.”
The three were charged with storming into a fenced-off courtyard known as Civic Square beside Hong Kong’s government complex on the evening of Friday Sept. 26, 2014, in a bid to protest Beijing’s plan to restrict the elections.
They and dozens of other young activists were detained by police. In response, crowds of demonstrators flooded the area over the weekend to demand their release.
You can’t go past a news paper, radio show or television news story these days without being flooded by all things Bitcoin or Crypto Currency. Some say it’s the new world of money while others suggest its all just a passing fad. Whatever your position or preference of...
This week I announced a suite of measures for the Government to consider when it comes to small and medium sized business and what we can all be doing as we start to look at emerging from the COVID19 lockdown. The reality is that a good number of small business owners,...
As someone who has been working in suicide prevention for some years now i know that often having a simple conversation can make all of the difference when a loved one is doing it tough. COVID 19 and the lock down tends to amplify how we feel when we are isolation or a...
We know that mob out there are uncertain as to what the COVID-19 / Corona Virus means for them – this can cause us all to panic and some in community more so that others. Panic attacks can compound the situation so we gather some information about what you can do now t...
Don’t forget our elders can suffer in silence too: suicide prevention
Many people think that mental health and suicide are not topics that impact our elders but they could not be more wrong. The data tells us there continues to be an emerging trend when it comes to peop...