Climate of Fear: Hong Kong’s New Security Law

Reckoning with Hong Kong’s National Security Law and its Impact on Civic Freedoms

Published: July 29, 2020

The passage of Hong Kong’s new National Security Law threatens to upend civic freedoms and usher in a new era of restricted civic space. In the month since its enactment, civil society actors have fled the city, taken down writings and social media accounts, and scrambled to adapt to the new reality. The Law represents a sea change from the previous freedoms Hong Kong enjoyed. It will likely have major impacts on the ability of residents to engage in peaceful protest and civic activism, with individuals already arrested for waving independence flags, chanting political slogans, and even holding up blank pieces of paper. The Law’s wide-ranging effects extend globally to individuals and institutions operating outside Hong Kong and China, and could heavily curtail international engagement in Hong Kong.

For our expert analysis of how the Law affects the future of civic freedoms in Hong Kong, click here.