UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on Tuesday expressed concern about the convictions of an additional five individuals, including four juveniles, in Hong Kong under the National Security Law.
In a statement, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani stated, “We are worried by the sentencing on Saturday of another five persons, four of whom were children, under the National Security Law in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of China (Hong Kong SAR). According to the Hong Kong Free Press, five adolescents who were convicted previously admitted guilt to the allegation of conspiring to encourage subversion by making calls for an uprising under the national security statute enforced by Beijing.
The first four juveniles to get sentences are Yuen Ka-him, 17, Wan Chung-wai, 16, Leung Yung-wan, 17, and Tseung Chau Ching-yu, 17. All young people, including 19-year-old political activist Kwok Man-hei, have been sentenced to time in a juvenile detention facility, which serves as an alternative to prison for those under 21.
The National Security Law’s detrimental effects on fundamental rights and freedoms in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region have been frequently raised by the UN Human Rights Office and other UN human rights instruments, the statement continued. The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child were two international human rights treaties that the UN rights body reminded the Hong Kong SAR authorities of their responsibilities.