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NEW YORK (December 28, 2021) — The Human Rights Foundation (HRF) calls for the immediate release of pro-democracy activist, award-winning Cantopop star, and former Oslo Freedom Forum speaker, Denise Ho.

This morning, Hong Kong’s national security police arrested Denise Ho, under allegations of publishing seditious” and “inflammatory” materials. Ho was arrested along with five other individuals affiliated with Stand News, an independent pro-democracy online publication. Ho formerly served on the board of Stand News, but stepped down in November of this year. 

“It is outrageous that Denise Ho is in custody,” said HRF Chief Executive Officer Thor Halvorssen, “and another indicator that the Hong Kong government is a puppet of the Chinese Communist Party. They have complete disregard for press freedom and are shameless in brazenly attempting to remove all of Hong Kong’s freedom advocates from public sight through high-profile arrests.” 

HRF condemns the Hong Kong government’s use of large-scale crackdowns on dissent and politically-motivated arrests.

In addition to being a household name in Hong Kong for her music, Denise Ho is one of the most inspirational and prominent figures of the city’s pro-democracy movement. She was arrested in 2014 during the Umbrella Movement, and since 2019, has spoken at several Oslo Freedom Forums, including in Oslo, New York City, and Taipei, to expose the severe erosion of civil liberties in Hong Kong. Ho has since addressed the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva, and testified to the United States Congress in Washington D.C. to raise global awareness of the Chinese government’s clampdown on Hong Kong. 

“How many more innocent individuals in Hong Kong must be arrested before the international community responds?” said HRF Chairman Garry Kasparov. “We stand in solidarity with Ho and all the brave individuals wrongly imprisoned for simply exercising their basic rights. The Hong Kong government must immediately release them to avoid yet another grave miscarriage of justice.”

The Human Rights Foundation (HRF) is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization that promotes and protects human rights globally, with a focus on closed societies.

Donate to HRF’s Hong Kong Desk to help hold perpetrators of human rights abuses in Hong Kong accountable. 

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