Wong says China rise means trade trumps rights

Sun.Star Pampanga - - WORLD! -

HONG KONG (AP) — Young Hong Kong democ­racy ac­tivist Joshua Wong warned Wed­nes­day that China’s rise means hu­man rights are in in­creas­ingly greater danger of be­ing over­shad­owed glob­ally by busi­ness in­ter­ests.

He was re­spond­ing to ques­tions about his ex­pec­ta­tions for an up­com­ing Asian tour by Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump, who will visit China and four other count r i es.

The 21-year-old, who is Hong Kong’s most fa­mous ac­tivist, is out on bail while he ap­peals a prison sen­tence re­lated to his in­volve­ment in mas­sive 2014 pro-democ­racy protests.

“Busi­ness in­ter­ests over­ride hu­man rights,” he said in an in­ter­view with The As­so­ci­ated Press. “It un­for­tu­nately seems to be a com­mon trend in the world” un­der a ris­ing China.

Dur­ing Trump’s Asian trip, he said there’s likely to be “a lot of un­cer­tainty. No one can ex­pect what will sud­denly be pub­lished on his Twit­ter.” But he urged Trump to not let hu­man rights lose out to com­mer­cial con­sid­er­a­tions, say­ing that U.S. busi­ness in­ter­ests could also some­day be di­rectly af­fected by China’s ris­ing clout.

As an ex­am­ple, he re­ferred to the re­cent case of Bri­tish hu­man rights ac­tivist Bene­dict Rogers, who was barred from en­ter­ing Hong Kong on what many sus­pect to be Bei­jing’s re­quest, and said it might hap­pen again.

“The day may come for U.S. politi­cians to be blocked from en­ter­ing Hong Kong and when politi­cians or busi­ness­men from the U.S. might not be pos­si­ble to en­ter such an in­ter­na­tional fi­nan­cial cen­ter, how can they keep silent on the ero­sion of Hong Kong au­ton­omy?” he said.

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