Attempting to cast journalism (even merely quoting dissenters’ views) as a crime, the prosecution in the Stand News trial is asking some desperate-sounding questions…
Lead prosecutor Laura Ng said the message conveyed by the profile of [pan-dem] Fergus Leung was that the national security law was suppressing political participation, adding that the interviewee’s claims about the law in the article were often “groundless.”
…Ng argued that the phrase [‘liberate Hong Kong’] was not outlawed in August 2020 when the article [in which Leung said he would be arrested for saying it] was published … “…His claim was groundless,” she said.
…Ng said she was keen to understand the circumstances in which Chung would take down an article out of national security concerns. She also asked him several hypothetical questions, including whether Chung would publish a commentary calling the Nazi uniform “stylish” if he was the editor in a European news outlet during World War II.
…In response to another question on whether he would conduct a feature interview with Osama Bin Laden after the September 11 attack in New York, Chung said a news editor should never turn down an interview with a political figure of such importance. However, some precautionary measures must be made beforehand, he added.
“Don’t you see it would endanger national security? What if some Americans think the country deserves to be bombed after hearing his speech?” Ng asked.
I’d have thought the judge would step in and tell her to keep the questions relevant (or stop displaying her ignorance of journalism) – but what do I know?
The government plans a law formalizing Beijing’s ‘interpretation’ effectively giving the Chief Executive authority to bar (or not bar) overseas lawyers from NatSec cases…
The DoJ … proposed that the certificate apply to all national security cases no matter if it is civil or criminal or otherwise, including offenses under the national security law, or other offenses endangering national security.
“The legislative proposal will not have adverse implications on the rule of law, the court’s independent judicial power as guaranteed by the Basic Law, and the parties’ right to choose their legal representation and the right to a fair trial,” it said.
With a straight face.
Jimmy Lai is still trying to get round the original interpretation.