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Baptist Pastor Left Hong Kong Given Shrinking Freedom

04/23/2021 Hong Kong (International Christian Concern) – The president of the 80,000 members strong Baptist Convention in Hong Kong, ten days before his term expires, resigned and left Hong Kong for the United Kingdom.

On April 20, Rev. Lo Hing-choi and his wife departed from Hong Kong and began a new chapter in their lives. Although he feels conflicted, in an article published in Christian Times, he alluded to the timing of his immigration, “the biggest – or the only – reason behind it, is the changes in Hong Kong and its shrinking freedom.”

He added, “The government policies have deviated from the principles and basis of reasonableness and fairness. What is happening is not just Hong Kong being ‘torn apart,’ but a severe ‘dislocation.’”

 According to Asia News, in 2019, under the presidency of the Rev. Lo, the Baptist Convention had publicly asked the government to withdraw the extradition law. And last June, Lo himself criticized the national security law imposed by Beijing, saying that it put an end to the principle of “one country, two systems”, deprives the population of the right to speak and destroys the judicial system of the city.

Although he was not pressured by anyone to leave Hong Kong, in July and September 2019, he was publicly criticized by pro-Beijing newspapers such as Ta Kung Pao. It was a sign that forceful actions might follow, based on the recent arrests of local democracy leaders, condemned for participating in unauthorized demonstrations, and the Apple Daily newspaper.

Rev. Lo joins several other church leaders as they flee abroad in fear of repercussions from the increasingly authoritarian Hong Kong government. Two pastors, Wong Siu-yung and Yeung Kin-keung, who had signed an “Evangelical Declaration” in which they ask Christians to denounce the errors of the authorities and resist any totalitarian regime, have settled in third country and plan to set up churches for Hong Kong Christian immigrants like them.

For interviews, please contact Alison Garcia: press@persecution.org.

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