Hong Kong Christians fear religious freedom could be 'gone forever'


Referring to United Nations human rights boss Michelle Bachelet, she said: "Will the High Commissioner support our appeal for this Council to convene an urgent session and establish a Commission of Inquiry, to ensure justice and human rights for the people of Hong Kong?".

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam speaks to reporters during a press conference at the government building in Hong Kong, Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019.

"Why is China sitting here, as a member of this Human Rights Council?" This is a plea for democracy. "Suppressing the violence is still the priority".

Pointing out that she was speaking as Hong Kong on Monday entered its 100th day of protests, Chan cautioned that "there is no sign that police will exercise restraint".

It has since spiralled into a broader pro-democracy movement.

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam has reiterated her support for local police in her latest public appearance, while adding that her dialogue sessions with the community begin next week.

It said the stalemate between the authorities and protesters has increased downside risks to the city's economy and institutions and it would likely cut the credit rating in future if the protests, or measures taken by the government to resolve them, damage Hong Kong's medium-term economic prospects or signify an erosion in its institutions. Instead, they arrested a young person who had been beaten, according to online footage.

"I hope Hong Kong will be peaceful again. The systematic and calculated violent acts of this group have never been condoned by all Hong Kongers", Ho and Wu said.

'Sending in the tanks remains irrational, though not impossible, ' Wong said.

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But Gina Goh, International Christian Concern's South East Asia regional manager, said it's "ridiculous to expect" Hong Kong will be fair to the people after eroding the trust between the leadership and the citizens.

"We do not concur, especially if the justification for that sort of change in outlook is premised on whether we are still upholding "one country, two systems", she said.

"That deadline is closer to us than it appears; there's no return", Wong said.

Also on September 17, about 50 members of the Democracy Party staged a rally outside of the Hong Kong Police Headquarters in Wan Chai, announcing the establishment of a task force within the party to travel to different countries to urge governments around the world to sanction the Hong Kong police force.

"Blaming the United States government - and this Congress - for the protests is cowardly propaganda and not befitting a nation with aspirations of global leadership", Representative Chris Smith said at the hearing.

Christians and pro-democracy supporters are anxious the Chinese government could make another attempt to ramrod legislation in Hong Kong that would specifically target the faith community and strip basic human rights.

Chan accused Hong Kong police of attacking "innocent subway passengers whom they claimed had been rioters in cover", firing thousands of creep gasoline canisters, and using "brutal crackdowns and preemptive violence" as "pest preserve watch over" towards protesters they regard as "cockroaches".

Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican ally of Trump, hailed the Hong Kong protests as "one of the greatest people-power movements we have witnessed in recent memory".

In one case, he said protesters hurled gasoline bombs at two police officers, who were forced to take out their pistols as a warning.