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China is now exporting its totalitarianism to the West

Bodies of two women found at house in Nottingham ‘lay undiscovered’ for some time, police say
Published Time: 14.05.2024 - 19:40:23 Modified Time: 14.05.2024 - 19:40:23

We need to advance beyond mere slap-on-the-wrist responses if Beijing’s incursions into our society are to be prevented Both Britain and Hong Kong have national security laws, but they are a world apart

We need to advance beyond mere slap-on-the-wrist responses if Beijing’s incursions into our society are to be prevented


Both Britain and Hong Kong have national security laws, but they are a world apart. Our National Security Act is a vital tool in our democratic arsenal, designed to defend our freedoms against attempts by hostile powers to infiltrate, influence or intimidate our citizens. In contrast, Hong Kong’s draconian National Security Law, imposed by Beijing in 2020, and the newer version introduced in March, have destroyed Hong Kong’s freedoms and turned what was once an open society into a police state.

Now Beijing is increasingly trying to export its totalitarianism to the West. Recent cases of alleged espionage, cyber attacks on Parliament and the Electoral Commission, and harassment of and threats to critics of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in Britain and other democracies are just the tip of the iceberg. The CCP is conducting a sustained assault on our liberties as part of its campaign of transnational repression.

Diaspora communities – Hong Kongers, Uyghurs, Tibetans and Chinese dissidents – are the primary targets of this campaign. Last year, the Hong Kong government issued arrest warrants and HK$1 million bounties against 13 exiled Hong Kong pro-democracy activists, six of whom live in the UK. Their families and friends still in Hong Kong were dragged in for interrogation and threatened. The obvious aim of such tactics is to silence dissent even abroad through a chill factor created by an atmosphere of fear.

The long arm of Beijing threatens not only well-known dissidents, but ordinary Chinese and Hong Kong students in Western universities, according to a report released this week by Amnesty International. Surveillance and intimidation by the CCP on our campuses is leading to self-censorship in academia.

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