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Over a hundred MPs call on Commonwealth countries to offer citizenship to Hong Kongers

  • September 10, 2019

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The UK government has become more vocal about the protests in Hong Kong as they spill from summer into autumn. Politicians have urged China to continue recognising the Sino-British Joint Declaration, as Beijing had previously dismissed it as a “historical document [that] no longer has any practical significance.” 

In June, the UK halted new export licenses for crowd control equipment after human rights groups said Hong Kong police were firing tear gas made by British contractor PW Defence.

Key MPs including Mr Tugendhat have urged the government to extend rights to British National Overseas passport holders. Introduced in the last decade of colonial rule, the BNO passport, with its burgundy cover and coat of arms, looks like a regular British passport but doesn’t provide holders the right to live and work in the UK, long a point of contention. 

And a Parliamentary motion this month also called on the UK seek agreements with Commonwealth nations to grant citizenship rights to Hong Kong people.

Protests ending in tear gas volleys from police and fire bombs from demonstrators continue to disrupt Hong Kong, even after leaders last week verbally agreed to one concession: to formally withdraw the controversial extradition proposal. 

The Hong Kong government denied on Tuesday ongoing rumours that protesters had died while police cleared and arrested demonstrators at a subway station a week ago in a rare joint press conference with the police emergency services, and the city’s train operator. 

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