China and Hong Kong: Missing Booksellers Episode

Five booksellers in Hong Kong, whose stores stocked books not approved by the Mainland, have gone missing. A Chinese journalist in Thailand has gone missing too. The rumours are that all six of these men were illegally and secretly taken back to the Mainland for questioning. Who knows when, if ever, they will reappear?

But the real importance of this issue is not these particular six men, but rather what it might be telling us aboutChina’s attitude towards Hong Kong, allies like Thailand, and perhaps even beyond. Hong Kong’s right to have different freedom and censorship laws was enshrined after the handover in 1997, is that going away? It is certainly a huge worry to the population of Hong Kong, as evidenced by large street protests and the unexpected success of a new film exploring what Hong Kong may look like in 10 years


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