Hong Kong: Protesters and dissidents in inhumane detention

13 July at 18:00 19:00 BST

The PRC’s crackdown on the anti-extradition come pro-democracy movement of 2019, and subsequent imposition of the NSL in 2020, is threatening the rule of law, political freedom, and human rights in Hong Kong to an unprecedented degree.

Hong Kong’s legal system, once revered as the most robust in Asia, is now steadily in decline. Many Hongkongers were arrested on dubious terms during the protests of 2019, and the National Security Law (NSL) has been mobilised as a weapon of ‘lawfare’ targeting Hongkongers – from university students to successful entrepreneurs – deemed criminals under its vague terms. Once arrested, protestors and dissidents have been subject to inhumane conditions and cruel treatment in Hong Kong’s correctional facilities; this is a particularly grievous development that demands attention.

Join Baroness Kennedy of the Shaws QC – Member of the House of Lords, Carmen Lau – Former District Councilor in Hong Kong, Gray Sergeant – Associate Fellow in Chinese Geopolitics, Council on Geostrategy, and Stephen Vines – Author, award winning journalist and public speaker, as they discuss the ‘criminal’ nature of the courts and corrections system in Hong Kong and the findings of the paper: Hong Kong’s courts and corrections: A ‘criminal’ justice system, published by the Council on Geostrategy.


Baroness Kennedy of the Shaws QC

  • Member of the Justice and Home Affairs Committee, House of Lords
    Baroness Helena Kennedy was called to the Bar at Gray’s Inn 1972. She was Chair of Charter 88 (1992–1997) and is closely affiliated to the educational charity Common Purpose. In 1997 she was appointed as a Labour Life Peer in the House of Lords. In 2020, she worked with the Conservative MP Iain Duncan Smith and democracy activist Luke de Pulford to create the global pressure group Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China. In March 2021 she was sanctioned by the People’s Republic of China.

Carmen Lau

  • Former District Councilor in Hong Kong, Outreach Coordinator for Hongkongers in Britain
    Carmen Lau is a Hong Kong activist and former Elected District councillor on Wong Tai Sin District Council. She is currently Outreach Coordinator for Hongkongers in Britain.

Gray Sergeant

  • Robert Swinhoe Associate Fellow in Chinese Geopolitics, Council on Geostrategy
    Gray Sergeant is Chair of Hong Kong Watch and currently a Human Rights and Democracy Fellow at the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy in Taipei. Previously he was a Research Fellow at the Henry Jackson Society’s Asia Studies Centre where he focused on UK-Taiwan relations. He has held various positions for the Labour Party, worked in the UK Parliament and spent several years in human rights advocacy, with a specific focus on Tibet. He studied International Relations and History at the LSE and went on to complete a Masters in Chinese Politics at SOAS. He also spent one year at National Taiwan University studying Mandarin.

Stephen Vines

  • Author, award winning journalist and public speaker
    In 1987 Vines moved to Hong Kong as South East Asia Correspondent for The Observer. Five years later he became The Guardian’s Hong Kong Correspondent and a regular contributor to papers such as the Asian Wall Street Journal, Fortune and the Daily Telegraph. In 1993 he became the founding Chief Editor of Eastern Express. Before his departure from Hong Kong in 2021 he was writing opinion columns for a number of Hong Kong outlets and presented The Pulse, a current affairs television programme, as well as being a weekly contributor to the Morning Brew radio show, both of which were aired by the public broadcaster, Radio Television Hong Kong.


Viktorija Starych-Samuoliene

  • Co-founder and Director of Strategy, Council on Geostrategy
    Viktorija Starych-Samuolienė is Co-founder and Director of Strategy at the Council on Geostrategy where she is responsible for the organisation’s strategic development and external affairs and specialises in Eastern European and Baltic politics and security. Her previous experience included roles at the Henry Jackson Society and an internship at the Lithuanian Embassy in Tokyo, Japan. She holds an MA in Intelligence and International Security from King’s College, London, and a BA in Political Science from Vilnius University.


Hong Kong’s courts and corrections: A ‘Criminal’ justice system

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