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Olof Palme International Center »RIP Hong Kong

Olof Palme International Center »RIP Hong Kong

The sender is the Hong Kong Congress of Trade Unions, the Hong Kong-based Free Trade Union Central Organization. Earlier this fall, news came of the organization’s decision to dissolve. Being a unionist is very dangerous with Hong Kong’s new security laws. With their farewell email, they thank each other after three decades of union and democratic struggle.

“I spoke for the weak and fought for democracy. If I have to go to prison for it, so be it.” lee cheok yan before the judge. As the General Secretary of the HKCTU, he has a long history of union and political struggle behind it. This spring, he was sentenced to prison for speaking at meetings classified as illegal. Additional trials are ongoing and penalties may be increased

Former Chairman of the Board of Directors of HKCTU, Carol Ng, He is also at risk of imprisonment. She is in detention and awaiting trial after accusations of “subversive activity”. Mung Siu Tat, the head of the organization at HKCTU, was forced to leave his post and flee to Britain.

Despite protests from the outside world, China in recent years has stifled democracy and independence in Hong Kong. The free Hong Kong that was promised no longer exists. The free trade union movement that was at the heart of the struggle for democracy no longer exists.

Not only in Hong Kong, but in large parts of the world, the space for civil society has been shrinking. 87.3 percent of the Earth’s population, 6.4 billion people, today live in somewhat restricted societies – some of whom are oppressed, threatened, abused and imprisoned due to regulation. Others live in completely closed societies where civil society must operate underground, with the risk of being imprisoned or killed. The common denominator is that the head targets grassroots and union organizations, freedom of expression and the opportunity to protest.

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You and I belong to the 3.4 percent of the world’s population who live in an open society where there is freedom of association and the arrangement of public meetings. small minority. Yet we take freedom for granted.

We organize party meetings, represent district annual conferences, arrange square meetings and knock on doors. Wear the party needle on the jacket. The activities for which our comrades are imprisoned around the world. As their struggle intensifies, so must our support. Think of international solidarity and act for it.

The article was published in Aktuellt i Politiken 6/12