Great Britain

Raab welcomes US offer of safe haven to Hong Kongers

London [UK], August 6 (ANI): UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on Thursday (local time) welcomed the decision by the United States to offer a stay of expulsion to Hong Kong residents staying in the country who fear persecution back home.

He also said the United Kingdom would stand up for Hong Kongers by offering British overseas citizens, a path to British citizenship.

"I warmly welcome the US's big-hearted decision to announce a migration offer for Hong Kongers. The UK is standing up for the people of Hong Kong, including by offering British Nationals (Overseas) in Hong Kong a path to citizenship," Raab tweeted.

Earlier, US President Joe Biden signed a memorandum that provides a temporary safe haven to residents of Hong Kong.

"Today, President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. signed a memorandum directing the deferral of removal of certain Hong Kong residents who are present in the United States, giving them a temporary safe haven," the White House spokesperson Jen Psaki statement said.

The move shows Biden's "strong support for people in Hong Kong in the face of ongoing repression by the People's Republic of China (PRC) and makes clear we will not stand idly by as the PRC breaks its promises to Hong Kong and to the international community," it added.

US has been vocal about Beijing's crackdown on the territory through its National Security Law passed in June last year. This measure has also been slammed by the international community which criminalises rights through vague charges, The Hill reported.

This latest move is likely to invite a strong response from Beijing, which has rejected criticism from the US and its allies over its crackdown in Hong Kong.

China, with the help of local authorities, has been ruling Hong Kong with an iron fist. Authorities have also begun clamping down on pro-democracy activists.

As China has strengthened control over Hong Kong through varieties of laws including the draconian National Security Law, the people of the semi-autonomous city are facing increasing policing and crackdown. (ANI)

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