The Stand News trial gets slightly meta, as the prosecution raises the case of the NatSec 47 – proceedings taking place in parallel in another court…
[Prosecutor] Ng then asked [ex-editor] Chung what [op-ed contributor Nathan] Law had meant in stating that the case of the 47 “was not about the law” and that “the Chinese Communist Party blatantly abused its power.” The author was also cited as saying that the national security case was a “manipulatable state-level trial.”
(This prosecutor does not appear to have a great sense of irony.)
Chung told the court that the ex-lawmaker saw “the entire case as a political trial manipulated by the Beijing authorities, in the end they just use the Hong Kong court to carry out the suppression of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy camp.”
…“To always think of the public as irrational or capable of being easily misled, so that the authorities and elites need to censor thoughts and speeches beforehand – is what I will not accept in my heart,” Chung added.
The prosecutor also asked Chung if he agreed that Law’s accusations that the CCP could “hide the sky with one hand” and that the court “worked with the CCP to carry out a state-level trial” would be the most eye-catching parts of the op-ed.
Mandatory outdoor mask-wearing is extended for another two weeks. I had this deranged idea that after the last extension was greeted with mockery, the authorities would finally let go of this symbolic and farcical requirement – if only to belatedly accord with the Chief Executive’s claim two weeks ago in Saudi that Hong Kong had no Covid restrictions. I will now reluctantly concede to skeptics that we are going to be forced to wear these things until at least November. 2025.
On the subject of skeptics – they are recommencing their pub gatherings.
Some weekend reading…
The Guardian on Beijing’s barring of state companies from ‘big four’ audits.
CMP on Beijing’s China International Communication Center – which does friendly co-production with overseas media to ease them gently into telling good China stories.