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Court convicts 7 in Hong Kong over unauthorised protest

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Seven Hong Kong pro-democracy figures were convicted, on Thursday, for taking part in an unauthorised protest in 2019.

Prominent pro-democracy activist, Martin Lee, and media mogul, Jimmy Lai, were among those found guilty in a Hong Kong court.

It was not clear when the group would be sentenced.

The court decision was the latest blow for Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement, which Beijing has been cracking down on with a heavy hand.

In the last few months, especially since the introduction of the controversial national security law in June, numerous well-known activists have been handed lengthy prison sentences for relatively minor offences.

A number of Hong Kong activists fled to other countries in fear of prosecution.

On Tuesday, China approved an electoral reform which means voters would have less say in the make-up of Hong Kong’s legislative bodies.

It effectively reduces the influence of the pro-democracy camp in the legislature.

Beijing has stated that it wants only what it calls patriots to govern in Hong Kong, namely politicians who support the central Chinese Communist government.

Hong Kong was handed over to China by Britain in 1997.

Under the agreements required for the transfer, the Chinese government allowed Hong Kong and its residents to retain many of the freedoms they had enjoyed as a British colony, including freedom of speech and a separate judiciary, until 2047.

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