US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo piles pressure on Carrie Lam over rights of 12 Hongkongers detained in Shenzhen

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo piles pressure on Carrie Lam over rights of 12 Hongkongers detained in Shenzhen

  • Top diplomat is the first American official to weigh in on matter by releasing statement and tweet
  • He accuses mainland authorities of not providing information on group’s welfare or the charges against them

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has expressed concerns over the welfare of 12 Hongkongers captured at sea and detained in mainland China after reportedly trying to flee to Taiwan, questioning the city leader’s commitment to protect residents’ rights.

Pompeo is the first American official to weigh in on the matter by releasing a statement on Friday, saying the suspects “have been denied access to lawyers of their choice” after their speedboat was intercepted by the China Coast Guard and they were detained in Shenzhen on August 23.

Pompeo accused mainland authorities of not providing information on their welfare or the charges against them, and called for due process.“We hope Chief Executive [Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s] stated commitment to protecting the rights of Hong Kong residents is more than just words,” he also tweeted after the statement.