Congressman Francis Rooney Votes to Support Democracy and Human Rights in Hong Kong

Congressman Francis Rooney Votes to Support Democracy and Human Rights in Hong Kongch

Washington, DC— With the Hong Kong protests becoming more violent and enduring, Congressman Francis Rooney voted in support of the protesters fighting for their rights and autonomy.

Congressman Rooney said, “Since 1997, Hong Kong has existed as a semi-autonomous region of China. The Fugitive Offenders bill, which ignited the mass protests in June, would have eroded their autonomy and civil rights by subjecting Hong Kong residents to the criminal jurisdiction of the Communist Party and mainland China. I stand with the people of Hong Kong who are defending their human rights and autonomous status. I was proud to vote in favor of the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which passed the House 417-1. The United States Congress is united in its strong support for the people of Hong Kong in their fight for democracy.”

Background:

  • The mass protests in Hong Kong started in June, following the Hong Kong government’s introduction of the Fugitive Offenders Amendment Bill in February. Protesters claimed this bill would subject Hong Kong residents to mainland Chinese jurisdiction and legal systems, which would ultimately undermine the region’s autonomy and the resident’s civil liberties.
  • The Hong Kong protests have recently been focused on the campus of Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Intense clashes between the police and protesters had preceded for months, becoming increasingly violent and deadly. Police have fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters, who in return tossed Molotov cocktails and shot arrows back at the police.
  • The Hong Kong Polytechnic University is the last campus still occupied by activists with about 100 protesters inside.
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