Hong Kong police arrest eight over university protest

Eight people have been arrested in Hong Kong over an unauthorised protest at a university campus.

More than 100 people are understood to have protested at The Chinese University of Hong Kong last month against a decision to hold graduation ceremonies online.

The ceremonies are often used by students to express political views.

Some protesters had called for Hong Kong independence and had signs such as “Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times”.

Gatherings like these are outlawed under the territory’s controversial new security law which Beijing hopes will stop the mass protests of recent years.

Police confirmed the eight arrests were for an unauthorised protest and inciting secession, but did not give names of those detained.

“We only arrested them who were shouting the slogan and displaying the flags (that) involved some national security concerns,” Steve Li, Senior Superintendent of the police’s National Security Department, told a news conference, referring to slogans deemed pro-independence.

A graduate of the university, Arthur Yeung, said on his Facebook page that he had been arrested at home on Monday.

District councillors, Isaac Lee and Eason Chan, were also among those arrested for the university protest, according to posts on their social media accounts.

The eight people were being investigated by national security officers, said the South China Morning Post, citing unnamed sources.

China has been accused of breaking the “one country, two systems” pledge to maintain greater political and economic freedoms made when the UK handed back the territory in 1997.

Many around the world believe the law will violate Hong Kong’s traditional liberties, including a free press, independent judiciary, and the right to protest.

Beijing insists Hong Kong’s freedoms will be protected and that the law is necessary to restore order to the city.

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