The High Court has refused to allow Demosisto leader Joshua Wong to leave Hong Kong to give speeches in Europe, the group revealed on Tuesday, with the court reportedly believing there was a risk of the pro-democracy activist absconding.
The refusal from the High Court came after a magistrate had also refused his application to be allowed to travel overseas.
Wong is currently out on bail after being charged with organising an illegal assembly near police headquarters in Wan Chai on June 21, as well as taking part in the protest and inciting others to do so.
Eastern Court had also given Wong a curfew, ordered him to report to a police station twice a week, and ruled he could not leave the city, save for trips that had already been planned prior to his arrest in late August.
Wong was hoping to be given permission to travel to six European countries, Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany and the UK, where he had been invited to parliamentary hearings and meetings, as well as to give speeches.
Demosisto says the court claimed that there is a risk of Wong absconding.
“By depriving me of the freedom of movement, the court has imposed an extra punishment before I was proven guilty,” Wong said.
His group said the court asserted that the invitations extended to Wong to attend hearings and meetings do not necessarily require him to be present in person.
Demosisto also said the judge commented that as Hong Kong’s circumstances had changed, Wong would be advised to stay in the city instead of making "efforts abroad to help Hong Kong”.
They speculated that the court was under immense pressure, following criticism from Beijing over Monday’s ruling that the administration’s anti-mask law is unconstitutional.
“It is crystal clear that 'One Country, Two Systems' is on the brink of collapse now, concerted efforts are necessary to help Hong Kong,” Wong said, adding he will not stop his international advocacy.
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