Washington, DC — Representatives Gregory W. Meeks, Ranking Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Ami Bera, M.D., Ranking Member of the Indo-Pacific Subcommittee, issued the following statement regarding the start of media tycoon Jimmy Lai’s trial in Hong Kong on Monday on charges of sedition and collusion with foreign forces, as well as the Hong Kong police issuing arrest warrants against five additional overseas-based activists last Thursday.

“After three years of detention and months of solitary confinement, 76-year-old Jimmy Lai is now on trial for standing up for freedom of expression and a free press. This politically motivated trial is yet another shameful chapter in Beijing’s destruction of Hong Kong’s judicial independence and autonomy.

“We also strongly condemn the Hong Kong police’s targeting of pro-democracy activists abroad, including American citizens. We stand with Joey Siu and the twelve others targeted by the People’s Republic of China and Hong Kong governments for their principled defense of democracy and human rights in Hong Kong.”