Demonstrators call for Rimsky Yuen to go - RTHK
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Demonstrators call for Rimsky Yuen to go

2017-10-01 HKT 17:04
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  • Demonstrators call for Rimsky Yuen to go
Thousands of people joined a rally on Sunday demanding that Justice Secretary Rimsky Yuen resign. The group, who marched to government headquarters at Tamar, accused Yuen of damaging the city's human rights by pursuing sentencing reviews of 16 democracy and land-use activists who were subsequently jailed.

Organisers read out letters from some of the activists, including former student leader Alex Chow and the League of Social Democrats' Raphael Wong, who were imprisoned after the Justice Department appealed against their original non-custodial sentences.

They were charged in relation to a brief occupation of Civic Square at Tamar, while other 13 activists were sentenced for storming the Legislative Council during a protest against a planned New Territories development.

One of Sunday's protesters, surnamed Chan, accused Rimsky Yuen of being biased in his prosecution.

"He's very unfair even though he's supposed to uphold the law. He's selectively upholding the law. The Basic Law is meant to be a high degree of autonomy, which is being eroded day by day." he said.

Another protester said he decided to bring his 11-year-old son to the demonstration to teach him to speak up when there's unfairness. He felt that Hong Kong's freedom of speech is being eroded.

Avery Ng of the League of Social Democrats, one of the march's organisers,had a grim assessment of the city.

"We believe we are entering into an authoritarian era in Hong Kong, whereby the law has used against people that hold a different view against the government," he said. "For those in support of the government's views, no matter what crimes they commit, they will go unpunished."

He said Rimsky Yuen should step down because he a had played a key role in the erosion of justice.

Organisers put the turnout at about 40,000, while the police said it was just 4,300.

In response to the march, the government said that the Basic Law provides constitutional protection to Hong Kong's legal system, judicial independence, human rights and the rule of law.

It said judicial decisions are made independently after fair and open hearings on the basis of the evidence presented in court and the applicable law. It said political consideration is not involved at all.