Freedoms in Hong Kong have been increasingly eroded and human rights have been undermined, according to a report by Paddy Ashdown, the former Liberal Democrat leader in the UK, that paints a bleak picture of the city’s future.
Lord Ashdown, who travelled to Hong Kong in November on a fact-finding mission, said rule of law, democracy and interference by Beijing were areas of concern.
China’s increasing interference in Hong Kong – acts that potentially contravene an international treaty signed with the UK – threatened Beijing’s image as a “trustworthy leader in the contemporary world”, he said.
“Over the past five years, the freedoms guaranteed to the people of Hong Kong in its mini-constitution, the Basic Law, have been increasingly eroded,” Ashdown wrote in the report. “The rule of law is under pressure, human rights are undermined and the city appears no closer to democracy.”