GOP Sen. Ted Cruz has hit out at Hong Kong chief Carrie Lam after she scrapped a gathering between the 2 scheduled for Saturday.
Cruz has been a vociferous critic of Lam’s management all through the anti-government protests, which have now entered their 19th week and present no indicators of slowing as masked protesters continued to pour into the streets.
The Texas senator, who was carrying black in solidarity with the protesters, was supposedly requested to maintain his assembly with Lam confidential, however the plans have been scrapped when Cruz informed reporters in Hong Kong.
“She seems to misunderstand how free speech operates, and also how freedom of the press operates,” Cruz stated, reported Reuters.
“Ms. Lam’s canceling the meeting is not a sign of strength. It’s a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of fear of the protesters in the streets of Hong Kong.”
Cruz’s arrival into the semi-autonomous metropolis marked one week since Lam invoked powers from the colonial period to enact an anti-mask legislation.
Lam argued the legislation would solely goal those that conceal their identities whereas performing violently as “an effective deterrent to radical behavior,” nonetheless the transfer solely appeared to impress protesters additional.
They claimed that the legislation was additional proof of Hong Kong’s slide into authoritarianism and raised fears about how China—which has sovereignty over the area—used facial recognition software program in a pervasive surveillance community to trace down dissenters.
Thousands took to the streets in face masks immediately after the announcement to enact the legislation and 1000’s extra turned out on Saturday.
“We came to protest against the mask law,” a protester named Emily informed Hong Kong Free Press. “I feel like Hong Kong is no longer normal like the past—it’s already damaged. We’re not afraid [of arrest].”
Cruz’s criticism of Lam additionally adopted sturdy phrases he had for the National Basketball Association (NBA) after they discovered themselves caught between China and free speech following tweets by Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey in help of the Hong Kong protesters.
Morey later deleted the publish and issued a public apology, however many took situation with the NBA’s dealing with of the controversy—seemingly censoring its employees and associates in order to not upset clients within the league’s largest exterior market.
Cruz fired out a variety of tweets and later issued a bipartisan letter with New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in condemnation of the NBA, accusing the league of a “betrayal of fundamental American values” within the chase for revenue.
“Unless American businesses aggressively confront this intimidation campaign, the Chinese government will increasingly punish free speech outside China’s border,” the letter learn.