About 370 protestors were arrested in Hong Kong on July 1 for participating in the pro-democracy march just one day after China passed the national security law.
On the annual July 1 pro-democracy march, the Hong Kong Police deployed water cannon truck, pepper balls, and tear gas to quell the demonstrators. Ten people were apprehended for allegedly breaking the national security law.
The new law came into force late night on June 30, hours after the top decision making body of China’s parliament passed the controversial legislation.
The protests took place across Causeway Bay and Wan Chai. The protesters chanted “five demands, not one less” and sang the pro-democracy anthem “Glory to Hong Kong.”
To muzzle the voices of pro-democracy protesters, the Hong Kong Police had earlier put a ban on the annual July 1 pro-democracy march. However, the protesters had announced that they would continue with their demonstrations.
Critics of the law say it undermines the city’s autonomy that was promised when Hong Kong was handed over from the U.K. to China.
According to the new law, arson and vandalizing public transport with an intent to intimidate the Hong Kong government or Chinese government for political purposes will constitute acts of terrorism.
The law also states that certain national security cases will be held behind closed doors without juries in Hong Kong if they contained state secrets, although the verdict and eventual judgments would be made public.
As per the new law, Beijing will be setting up an office for safeguarding national security in Hong Kong, with personnel dispatched from relevant Chinese security agencies.