Hong Kong needs a miracle, says retired cardinal

Published 09 June 2020  |  
(Photo: Unsplash/Ryan McManimie)

As Beijing continues to tighten its control of Hong Kong, Cardinal Joseph Zen says the former British colony needs a miracle.

The retired Archbishop of Hong Kong and outspoken critic of the Chinese Communist Party told Crux that he was "very worried" about developments in the territory as Beijing pursues a new national security law.

"We need a miracle; we need a miracle from heaven," the 88-year-old said.

Beijing last tried to impose a security measure in 2003 but it was withdrawn after huge backlash from the people of Hong Kong.

This time, Hong Kongers fear the new security law is going to be "much worse", the Cardinal said, adding that it could mark the end of freedoms promised to the territory under the 'one country, two systems' principle that has operated since the 1997 handover.

"It seems that this is going to destroy completely what they promised to Hong Kong in terms of autonomy," the Cardinal said.

While international leaders have condemned the national security law, Zen admitted he was sceptical Beijing would respond to outside pressure.

"I think really, we are expecting something terrible," he said.

He was also fiercely critical of the Vatican, accusing it of silence in the face of Hong Kong police brutality and persecution in mainland China.

"I'm sorry to say that we have nothing to expect from the Vatican," he said, adding that they have "surrendered the Church to the Chinese authority."

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