Thursday, July 2, 23-year-old Tong Ying-kit was arrested and 24 hours later charged with “terrorism” under the new security law imposed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) after the young man ran over police officers with a motorcycle as they shot him down. It is not clear from the video whether Tong went toward them or whether the police blocked his passage.

Tong is the first Hong Kong citizen to be arrested under the new law, and he is being charged with “terrorism.”

The new national security law came into effect on July 1, despite opposition from citizens and pressure from both the United States and Europe, who see the law as a threat to the “one country two systems” agreement with which the UK handed Hong Kong’s sovereignty to the CCP.

The young activist circulated with a flag that read “Liberate Hong Kong, the revolution of our times,” a slogan commonly seen on the streets of Hong Kong, both on buildings and walls. According to several news agencies, the police used this as a pretext to lay tougher charges on Tong under the new national security law, since, according to Reuters, the slogan “denotes separatism or subversion under the new law.”

The law penalizes people for any act of subversion, secession, terrorism, or conspiracy with foreign forces, with sentences of up to life in prison.

The implementation of the law led to mass protests in the streets of Hong Kong and to date some 370 people have been arrested during these protests.

Nathan Law, a prominent pro-democracy activist, had to flee Hong Kong to an undisclosed location after the law went into effect for fear of becoming a target of persecution. Other similar freedom fighting organizations like Demosisto were also dismantled to avoid reprisals.

UK response

Boris Johnson offered some 3 million Hong Kongers the possibility of becoming British citizens after this advance by the CCP that generated unrest in Beijing, which he promised would have consequences.

The President Trump announced that it would eliminate the special status of trade with Hong Kong, allegedly as a way of expressing rejection of this new law.