Questions and Answers

What is this campaign about?

The UK and China signed the Sino-British Joint Declaration in 1984, which promised that Hong Kong’s fundamental freedoms, high degree of autonomy, and way of life would remain unchanged until 2047. However, China and the Hong Kong government have made increasingly egregious breaches of its promise since the 1997 Handover. Most recently, they attempted to push through an extradition bill that would allow China to persecute critics in Hong Kong by undermining the firewall between the two jurisdictions. Hongkongers turned out in their millions to oppose the bill and protest against their unaccountable government.

We are fighting for what was promised to us as Hongkongers. We believe that the UK has a unique right and responsibility to hold China to its word as the only other signatory to the Joint Declaration – to uphold Hong Kong’s rights and freedoms as guaranteed in this international, legally-binding treaty.

What are your core objectives?

Through advertisements in the UK media and other high-profile publicity efforts, we hope to draw the UK public’s attention to how China has breached the Sino-British Joint Declaration by aggressively eroding Hong Kong’s freedoms, human rights, and the rule of law. We are calling on Boris Johnson, his Cabinet and Parliament to take concrete actions by imposing sanctions on those persons complicit in or responsible for suppressing Hongkongers’ human rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Joint Declaration. We are also calling upon Britain to include provisions on human rights, civil liberties and democratisation in any post-Brexit agreements with Hong Kong and China.

What can I do to help?

As a UK voter, you can sign our petition here to write to your MP about holding China accountable under the Declaration. This petition includes our calls for sanctions and human rights provisions in trade agreements with Hong Kong and China. You can also follow us and share our posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Telegram.

For more information about the evolving situation in Hong Kong, please go to our website standwithhk.org for updates.

Are you asking the UK to impose upon or interfere with Hong Kong’s affairs?

The Chinese government has frequently invoked the term ‘foreign interference’ in order to undermine Hongkongers’ appeals to the international community for support. However, this accusation is ahistorical and inaccurate. Hong Kong is a former British colonial territory. The Joint Declaration was an agreement between two sovereign states regarding the transfer of Hong Kong from the UK to China. Crucially, Hong Kong was not a signatory nor given any direct representation in dealing issues subsequently arise regarding the Declaration. In this campaign, Hongkongers are simply asking the UK - as the only other signatory - to exercise its unique legal right and moral responsibility to hold China to its promise. It involves ensuring that Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy, freedoms, rights, and way of life will remain unchanged for 50 years after the Handover.

What does your campaign involve?

We have placed print ads in the Evening Standard and The Guardian, as well as digital ads in The Guardian, Guido Fawkes, Conservative Home, The Spectator Coffee House, The Spectator, and The New Statesman. We also aim to maximise our reach to the British public by advertising on billboards across the UK. It is important to us that it isn’t just about Westminster and Whitehall. We want the British public to understand the unique role and responsibility its country has as the other signatory of the Joint Declaration, and to stand with Hong Kong people in their fight for freedom. Please follow our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for live updates on our campaign!

Where can I learn more about the history and background of Hong Kong’s current fight for freedom?

We have prepared an explanation of the Joint Declaration here. Full text can be found here.

You can also find videos on our Youtube channel.

Who are you? Who funded this campaign?

We are a group of ordinary Hongkongers who love and care about our city. One of us started a crowdfunding campaign on the forum LIHKG (dubbed the Hong Kong Reddit) for a campaign focusing on the UK’s role in the Sino-British Joint Declaration. We were highly successful, raising approximately £320,000 from 9,519 donors in less than a day.