John Lee: Hong Kong’s Next Leader

John Lee Ka-chiu, a former security chief has recently been elected as the next leader of Hong Kong. This move is being widely regarded as the Chinese government’s move to tighten its grip on the city.

Who will be replaced by John Lee?

Carrie Lam is being replaced by John Lee after the city’s chief executive election was held. From 1st July 2022, Lee will begin his five-year term as the city’s chief executive.

What role did Lee play during the violent crackdowns in 2019?

In 2019, he was serving as the Secretary for Security when the police started violent crackdowns on the pro-democracy protests. The protests began after a controversial bill was announced that would allow an individual to be extradited to mainland China. Lee permitted Hong Kong’s police force to use rubber bullets, tear gas, water cannons, and even at certain times live ammunition on all those who were protesting.

Why was John Lee economically sanctioned by the United States?

In the month of August 2020, the United States put economic sanctions against him for diminishing the autonomy of Hong Kong as well as restricting freedom of expression. This sanction came after 2 months of passing a security law that criminalized most activisms and protests and reduced the judicial autonomy of Hong Kong. The US accused him of using force to arrest, pressurize, imprison, and detain the citizens and of creating a special police unit so as to implement the draconian law.

Which party was banned during Lee’s watch?

The Hong Kong National Party was banned under Lee’s watch. It was the first party that supported independence for Hong Kong after the British handed the region to China in the year 1997. This party was banned in the year 2018. The party was accused by Lee to have spread hatred against mainland China.

What is his stance on the extradition bill?

Lee passed the extradition bill due to which he faced a lot of backlashes. However, during his election campaign, his tune regarding the bill changed, and said there isn’t any need to talk about the extradition bill anymore. After the protests and the backlashes, the bill was not fully initiated.

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