China rejects US call to free HK activists

China rejects US call to free HK activists

China on Monday rejected the United States call for the immediate release of a group of Hong Kong ‘democracy’ activists.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Zhao Lijian Lijian dismissed the demand from the US Embassy in Beijing as interference in China's "judicial sovereignty."

The activists are facing trial in China’s Shenzhen, after they attempted to escape the territory by speedboat for Taiwan.

"China is a country under the rule of law where the laws must be followed and violations must be punished," Zhao told reporters at a news conference in Beijing.

He said the US should "immediately stop interfering in China's internal affairs with the Hong Kong issue and China's judicial sovereignty".

Zhao added that China "firmly opposes" the Taiwan Assurance Act of 2020 that the US President Donald Trump signed into law on Sunday.

The Act expresses support for the normalisation of regular arms sales to strengthen Taiwan's self-defence capabilities.

"The Taiwan issue concerns China's sovereignty and territorial integrity while the US side should stop meddling in China's internal affairs regarding the Taiwan issue," Zhao added.