In Hong Kong, Pro-Democracy Newspaper Closes and Editor Is Arrested

Apple Daily, Hong Kong's largest pro-democracy newspaper, announced last week that it would cease operations. According to the organization's management, it had decided to stop operations due to safety concerns for staff.The fact that the Hong Kong Police Force had raided the newspaper offices several weeks ago likely influenced the tabloids decision. Officials claim that Apple Daily infringed on a controversial national security law China uses to expand its political influence in Hong Kong.Apple Daily had every right to be concerned about the safety of its employees. Apple Daily shut down four days ago. Sunday saw the arrest of a senior journalist at the airport as he tried to leave the city.Sources claim that the journalist was accused of conspiring with foreign countries or foreign source to endanger national safety. He could spend life behind bars. Many believe it to be Fung Waikong, an Apple Daily editor.According to reports, this is the seventh arrest of Apple Daily employees in recent weeks.Bipartisan senators have urged President Joe Biden for sanctions against the Chinese Communist Party, which is responsible for reversing many freedoms in Hong Kong.Biden released a statement on June 24 that stated, "It is a sad time for media freedom in Hong Kong" but did not specify how.Since the controversial national security law was passed in June, China has put more pressure on Hong Kong. Many believe that the law is a tool to aid the Chinese government in cracking down on the pro-democracy activists from the former British colony.Hong Kong was removed from the 2021 Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom due to the growing influence of the Chinese Communist Party (in Beijing) and local officials. It was rated as the most free economy worldwide from 1995 to 2019.It is sad to watch the citizens of this long-standing bastion of liberty lose their basic human rights in an ever losing battle.Do you have a comment about this article? Send us an email at [email protected] with your comments. We may publish them in our We Hear You section. Include the URL of the article or the headline, along with your name and the town/state.