Germany grants asylum to first refugee after Hong Kong security law

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Berlin, Oct. 25, 2020 (dpa/Naija247news) Germany has granted asylum to a refugee from Hong Kong for the first time since a controversial security law came into force in the semi-autonomous Chinese city.

According to statistics from Germany’s Federal Office for Migration and Refugees seen by dpa at least three Hong Kongers had asylum claims processed in Germany in the first nine months of 2020.

Of these, two claims were rejected and one application was granted.

Unconfirmed reports of the successful asylum application emerged last week, prompting the Hong Kong government to request a meeting with German Consul-General Dieter Lamle on Wednesday.

Without confirming the report, the Hong Kong government put out a statement on Wednesday expressing strong opposition to the move.

The Hong Kong activist group Haven Assistance had announced on Monday on Facebook that a 22-year-old supporter of the protest movement had received political asylum in Germany.

It is possible that further applications to Germany for asylum by Hong Kongers could be hidden in statistics on Chinese citizens without special status.

For all of China, including Hong Kong, asylum was granted by Germany in a total of 61 of 416 cases between January and September.

The territory has seen a crackdown on dissident voices since Beijing imposed new national security law on June 30 to punish secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces.

The widely criticized law has effectively made most activism illegal, including such seemingly petty acts such as singing songs with subversive lyrics or displaying subversive stickers.

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