ADHRRF — On the afternoon of September 14, a demonstration was held in front of Cologne Cathedral to support Hong Kong rally and condemn the tyranny of Chinese Communist Party (CCP). The participating groups included Amnesty International Germany, the Independent Chinese PEN Center (ICPC), the Federation for a Democratic China, the World Uyghur Congress (WUC), the Association for the Defense of Human Rights and Religious Freedom (ADHRRF), and The Church of Almighty God (CAG).
The event took place on the last day of the fourth China Festival in Cologne. Before the conclusion of the festival held to boost cultural exchanges and economic activities of both China and Germany, the representatives of different human rights organizations launched an appeal in support of the five demands of Hong Kong protest. They believed that it cannot be ignored the worsening issue of human rights in China, especially the anti-extradition bill protests in Hong Kong, which has lasted for more than 3 months. They called for more attention and criticism to the CCP’s human rights violations and persecution of democratic legality.
Sebastian Bartsch, speaker of Amnesty International in Cologne, stated that Hong Kong protest has come to a heat. He said, “What Hongkongers are resisting is actually the CCP’s planned and systematic intervention and infiltration to the democracy and freedom of Hong Kong.”
The anti-extradition bill protest in Hong Kong is widely seen as an unstructured and leaderless protest movement, and spontaneously organized by Hongkongers to fight for their democracy and freedom. However, the Chinese regime’s propaganda have consistently depicted the Hong Kong protesters as “rioters,” and accused the U.S. government as the behind-the-scenes black hand backing the protest.
Tienchi Martin-Liao, President of ICPC as well as the organizer of this event, described the CCP’s propaganda as ridiculous. She explained, “This kind of large-scale movement involves not only hundreds or thousands of people, but hundreds of thousands of and even up to one to two million people, constituting about a third of the population [in Hong Kong]. How can they be mobilized by foreign forces? They will not take to the streets even for such a long time if they themselves don’t have such a feeling, a need or moral indignation. But the Chinese government needs an excuse, so it says.”
Ms. Liao further indicated, “The Chinese government is scared of large-scale mass movement. They use various ways to explain the movement for nothing else but to show to its people that it happens because of the intervention of foreign forces.”
During the anti-extradition bill protest, Hong Kong police have arrested more than 1,000 protesters, aged from 12 to 83. The police fired heavy volleys of tear gas and rubber bullets to suppress the peaceful protestors, which have prompted universal attention and criticism from the international community. The ADHRRF issued an appeal on the same day to urge “Hong Kong government to establish an independent commission of inquiry into the police’s excessive use of force and hold the police officers engaged in violence accountable; and to retract the characterization of the protesters as rioters, restore the truth and release all the arrested peaceful protesters.” Meanwhile, the representative of ADHRRF hoped that the international community can urge the Chinese government to fulfill its promise of a high degree of autonomy to Hong Kong and support the freedom of speech and freedom of peaceful assembly of Hong Kong people.
Famous German pastor Roland Kühne, who has long been active in human rights, also attended the event to show his support for Hong Kong protesters. He said in the interview, “I was born in Berlin. We know what it means if a city is surrounded by negative forces of Communism. I feel an obligation of us to support the people in Hong Kong lest a recurrence of 1989 Tiananmen square massacre in China.”
At the event, CAG Christians expressed their solidarity with and support to Hong Kong’s fight for democracy, and also called for an end of the CCP’s persecution of Christians and Uyghurs.
Pastor Roland Kühne has been paying close attention to the human rights issues in China. Concerning the CCP’s persistent suppression and persecution of Christians, he said, “The autocrat just wants people to obey, but Christians will not be like this, as we know that the government isn’t in charge of our life, but only God is. That is why the autocrat fears Christians to have independent will.”