The UK is implementing a new visa scheme for Hong Kong people. This is good news for Hong Kong democracy advocates who are constantly being harassed by China. China is arresting pro-democracy leaders under the new National Security Law. Now the way will open for millions of Hong Kong citizens to take British citizenship. This scheme has come into effect from Sunday. From Sunday, people holding a British National (Overseas) passport and their dependents can apply online for a visa allowing them to live and work in the United Kingdom. After five years they will be able to apply for British citizenship.
The UK immigration scheme is believed to be a response to the National Security Law implemented in Hong Kong in China last year to quell protests and suppress democracy supporters. Britain has accused China of breaking the promise it made at the time of Hong Kong’s handover in 1997. It spoke of Hong Kong maintaining autonomy for 50 years. Britain argued that it was its moral duty to protect its citizens.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said about the scheme this week that we have deep ties of history and friendship with the people of Hong Kong. We stand together for their freedom and autonomy. ‘China has reacted sharply to the visa offer. Beijing said it is ready to take further steps. Britain’s doing so is dangerous.