HONG KONG — A Hong Kong internet service provider on Thursday said it had blocked access to a pro-democracy website to comply with the city’s national security law.
In a statement emailed on Thursday, Hong Kong Broadband Network said that it had disabled access to HKChronicles, a website which compiled information on “yellow” shops that had supported the city’s pro-democracy movement and released personal information and pictures of police and pro-Beijing supporters as part of a doxxing effort during anti-government protests in 2019.
“We have disabled the access to the website in compliance with the requirement issued under the National Security Law. The action was taken on 13 Jan PM,” the company said.
The chief editor of the site, Naomi Chan, said in a post last week that users in Hong Kong reported the site as inaccessible. Chan accused telecoms companies such as SmarTone, China Mobile Hong Kong, PCCW and Hong Kong Broadband Network of blocking the website.
China Mobile Hong Kong and SmarTone did not immediately comment. A PCCW spokesman said it had no comment on the matter.
“Naomi Chan hereby denounces ISPs that cooperate with the Chinese and Hong Kong government to restrict the citizens’ right and freedom to access information,” Chan said in a post on HKChronicles dated Jan. 7.
Chan advised Hong Kongers to “make early preparations to counter future Internet blockage at a larger scale, and to face the darkness before dawn.”
The move to block HKChronicles has intensified concerns that Beijing is asserting more control over the city and breaking its promise of letting the former British colony maintain separate civil rights and political systems for 50 years after the communist-ruled mainland took over in 1997.
It has also prompted fears that internet freedoms in Hong Kong could be curtailed, akin to the “Great Firewall of China,” a system of internet censorship on the mainland which blocks foreign search engines and social media platforms like Google, Facebook and Twitter and scrubs the internet of keywords deemed sensitive by the Chinese government.
Glacier Kwong, a digital rights and political activist based in Germany, wrote in a Twitter post last week that Hong Kong has “abused legal procedures and other means to hinder the freeflow of info online” in the last 18 months.
“The Hong Kong government is stifling Hong Kong people’s freedom on the Internet,” she wrote in another tweet. “An open Internet has always been the cornerstone of freedom in a place. Disrupting Internet freedom also undermines the flow of information, freedom of communication, and freedom of the press.”
Beijing imposed a national security law on Hong Kong last June, aimed at quelling dissent in the semi-autonomous territory after mass peaceful demonstrations against a now-withdrawn extradition bill later morphed into months of anti-government protests that at times descended into violent clashes between protesters and police.
The security law criminalizes acts of subversion, secession, terrorism and collusion with foreign powers to intervene in the city’s affairs.
Under Article 43 of the national security law, police have the authority to order “a person who published information or the relevant service provider to delete the information or provide assistance.”
- Amosun, Akinlade mourn Martins-KuyeIn NewsJanuary 17, 2021Former Ogun State Governor, Sen. Ibikunle Amosun and a governorship candidate, Hon. Adekunle Akinlade has sympathised with the family of a late ...[Read more]
- COVID-19: Lagos govt gives update on academic schedule for public, private schoolsIn COVID-19, NewsJanuary 17, 2021Former Ogun State Governor, Sen. Ibikunle Amosun and a governorship candidate, Hon. Adekunle Akinlade has sympathised with the family of a late ...[Read more]
- Former NYS Dem Party head gets vaccinated — in FloridaIn USAJanuary 17, 2021It’s all going south. A former head of New York Democratic Party has already received his first dose of the coronavirus vaccine — no thanks to Gov. ...[Read more]
- Starbucks shuts down several Manhattan stores over possible protestsIn USAJanuary 17, 2021Several Starbucks stores across Manhattan shuttered Sunday amid fears of protests, the company said. The coffee-chain giant cited possible ...[Read more]
- NYC families say DOE dropped French dual-language program at last minuteIn USAJanuary 17, 2021The city Department of Education abandoned a fledgling French dual-language program at the 11th-hour last week after stonewalling parents for months, ...[Read more]
- Four reportedly killed, residents desert community as cultists clash in BakassiIn Local NewsJanuary 17, 2021Two cemetery guards were on Sunday arrested by men of the Ondo State Security Network Agency, otherwise known as Amotekun Corps for alleged ...[Read more]
- NY man busted for alleged role in Capitol riot — after outing himself onlineIn USAJanuary 17, 2021A New York man has been arrested for his alleged role in the deadly US Capitol invasion — after posting an image of the mob to Instagram with the ...[Read more]
- Ex- Oyo Amateur Boxing Chair, Opaleye is deadIn SportsJanuary 17, 2021A former Chairman, Oyo State Amateur Boxing Association, Mr. Akintunde Opaleye is dead. DAILY POST gathered that Olaleye died on Sunday at the ...[Read more]
- Arsenal vs Newcastle: Gunners give injury updates on Martinelli, TierneyIn SportsJanuary 17, 2021Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta, will have Gabriel Martinelli and Kieran Tierney available for Monday night’s Premier League game with Newcastle. ...[Read more]
- Video captures suspects in Staten Island recording-studio shootingIn USAJanuary 17, 2021Chilling video shows the moment two armed suspects burst into a Staten Island recording studio Saturday and opened fire — killing a 23-year-old man ...[Read more]