BFF-46 US lawmakers nominate Hong Kong democracy movement for Nobel

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US lawmakers nominate Hong Kong democracy movement for Nobel

WASHINGTON, Feb 3, 2021 (BSS/AFP) – US lawmakers have nominated
Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement for the Nobel Peace Prize, calling
the campaigners a global inspiration as they endure a crackdown by
Beijing.

In a letter to the Nobel Committee submitted by the February 1
deadline and released Wednesday, nine lawmakers across party lines
cited the estimate that more than two million took to the streets on
June 16, 2019.

With Hong Kong having a population of 7.5 million, it amounts to
“one of the largest mass protests in history,” said the letter, led by
Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Democratic Representative Jim
McGovern, co-chairs of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China
that assesses human rights.

“This prize would honor their bravery and determination that have
inspired the world,” they wrote.

“We hope that the Nobel Committee will continue to shine a light on
those struggling for peace and human rights in China and we believe
the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong is deserving of recognition
this year.”

The lawmakers said they expected more Hong Kong democracy activists
to be convicted in the coming months “for the sole reason of
peacefully expressing their political views.”

Beijing last year imposed a tough security law that it has used to
clamp down on dissent after the unrest in the financial hub, which was
promised a separate system before Britain handed the territory back to
China in 1997.

Among those who have been rounded up include 24-year-old Joshua
Wong, one of the city’s most recognizable democracy advocates, who has
been charged with subversion.

The lawmakers recommended that the prize go broadly to all who have
pushed for human rights and democracy in Hong Kong since 1997.

Elected lawmakers around the world as well as governments, academics
and international judges have the right to nominate candidates for the
Nobel Peace Prize, and recommendations do not mean that they will be
selected.

China put heavy pressure on Norway, whose parliament appoints
members of the Nobel Committee, after the prize went in 2010 to jailed
dissident writer Liu Xiaobo — who was still in state custody when he
died seven years later.

BSS/AFP/MRU/2344hrs