HONG KONG: Kinfolk of 12 Hong Kong democracy activists detained in mainland China launched balloons carrying messages to their family members throughout the border on Saturday, as they known as for his or her return.
It has been 90 days for the reason that 12 have been arrested by the Chinese language coast guard in late August when fleeing their metropolis for Taiwan by boat.
Most of these aboard the vessel have been being prosecuted in Hong Kong for crimes linked to final 12 months’s enormous and infrequently violent pro-democracy protests.
They’ve since disappeared into the mainland’s notoriously opaque, party-controlled authorized system on immigration fees.
Members of the family climbed a small hill on the outlying island of Kat O, in northeastern Hong Kong simply throughout the harbour from Yantian in Shenzhen, the place the 12 Hong Kongers are being held.
“After I come up right here, I really feel I am nearer to him,” Wong Wai-yin’s mom advised AFP, overlooking Yantian from the hilltop.
“It is virtually inside attain, however it’s nonetheless out of attain.”
The family members and a few supporters held up a banner studying “SAVE 12”, and launched balloons with the names of and messages to their family members.
“Miss you a lot. Come house quickly,” one balloon learn.
A number of the family members just lately obtained handwritten letters from their family members for the primary time since their arrest.
The letters have been handed by legal professionals appointed by the Chinese language authorities after family-appointed counsel have been denied entry to the detainees, a typical transfer by authorities in delicate or political instances.
“There was no information about them in any respect earlier than. So once I obtained his letter, my spouse and I cried bitterly,” stated the daddy of Cheng Tsz-ho, who was additionally on the hilltop, including that they lastly knew their son was nonetheless alive.
“It doesn’t matter what they’ve been accused of, deep down of their hearts, they actually love Hong Kong. I hope mainland China can return them to Hong Kong as quickly as potential.”
In a press release, relations stated the letters warning family members towards chatting with the media and appeared to stick to a template and have been most likely written underneath duress.
They continued to name for his or her legal professionals’ entry to the shoppers, and the speedy secure return of the 12.
Pressured confessions, torture and prolonged incommunicado detention have been properly documented inside mainland China’s authorized system.