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Pro-China national anthem law muzzles creative activity in Hong Kong

ANI | Updated: Jun 24, 2020 16:13 IST

Hong Kong, June 24 (ANI): The newly passed national anthem protection law by the Hong Kong Legislative Assembly is being used by the authorities to suppress anti-China views.
The first victim of the law is a documentary on the protests in the city-state, according to Daniel C Tsang writing in the Hong Kong Free Press.
An uncut version of New York-based director Evans Chan's 'We Have Boots' had its world premiere at the International Film Festival Rotterdam in the Netherlands earlier this year.
A political art segment will be cut from the new expanded two-hour documentary, reported the Hong Kong Free Press.
The segment which will be cut involves local performance artist Kacey Wong playing music from March of the Volunteers on the accordion during a protest march in 2018.
Chan has said that his film will not be altered for screenings outside Hong Kong and that are no plans to show it in mainland China.
Despite several protests, the Hong Kong Legislative Assembly on June 3 had passed the new national anthem law thus criminalising the abuse of China's national anthem
Under the law, if anyone found guilty of deliberately altering or "insulting" the national anthem risk a fine of up to HK$50,000 or three years' imprisonment.
"A person commits an offense if, with intent to insult the national anthem, the person intentionally publishes the insulting in any way of the national anthem," the provision was quoted by the HKFP.
This comes as China is making efforts to bring the semi-autonomous city under it direct control.
Chan has said that Chan said 'We Have Boots' was expanded from the preliminary version screened in 2018. It has been updated with new interviews.
The new version of the documentary includes interviews with key figures in the 2014 Umbrella Movement, such as the University of Hong Kong law professor Benny Tai, retired Chinese University of Hong Kong sociologist Chan Kin-man, and pro-democracy lawmaker Shiu Ka-chun. They have talked about the emotional impact of the movement and their preparedness for potential imprisonment. (ANI)

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