Benedict Rogers

Benedict Rogers is chief executive of Hong Kong Watch and an advisor to the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC). His new book, ‘The China Nexus: Thirty Years In and Around the Chinese Communist Party’s Tyranny’, will be published later this year.

Britain must help Burma win its freedom

Three years ago today, the military in Burma (or Myanmar, as the junta prefers to call it) plunged the country back into hell. On 1 February 2021, Burma’s army, led by commander-in-chief General Min Aung Hlaing, seized power in a coup. After a decade of apparent liberalisation, which saw political prisoners released, space for civil

Parliament needs protecting from foreign infiltration

The suggestion this weekend that an alleged Chinese spy is a British-born parliamentary researcher – leading a policy group aimed at countering the growing threat from Beijing – has sent shockwaves through Westminster and beyond. The individual denies the accusations and says he is ‘completely innocent’ but MPs who know him and many of us who interacted with him are

Burma’s generals aren’t really pardoning Aung San Suu Kyi

The brutal generals ruling Burma – or Myanmar as they officially call it – seem to take us for fools. Today the junta issued a ‘partial pardon’ for the country’s jailed former leader Aung San Suu Kyi and reportedly transferred her from prison to ‘a more comfortable state-owned residence’. By doing this, they hope to

China’s censors have already won

The Chinese Communist Party regime has always been censorious. Its so-called ‘Great Firewall’ means that Facebook, Twitter and Google are blocked in China, many are films banned and even Winnie the Pooh was persona non grata after netizens spotted his resemblance to Xi Jinping. In the Chinese version of Bohemian Rhapsody, references to Freddie Mercury’s

Myanmar is on the verge of collapse

Deep in south-east Asia sits a country where 54 million people are living a total nightmare. A nation that, benighted for decades, now faces a humanitarian catastrophe. Myanmar – otherwise known as Burma – has been hit by a quadruple whammy: a military coup, a half-century long civil war reignited with a vengeance, economic collapse

Beijing’s cruel attempt to stop fleeing Hongkongers

The Chinese Communist party regime likes to portray itself as the new superpower, displaying its strength on the world stage. In reality it is an extraordinarily fragile, sensitive, fearful, petty and vindictive snowflake of a dictatorship that is so surprisingly un-self-confident that it responds to any criticism with aggression, any dissenting or disloyal idea with

China’s human rights crackdown is getting worse

The Chinese Communist Party regime’s repression is pervasive and intensifying. Over the past five years, Xi Jinping’s brutal assault on basic human rights has accelerated with horrifying ferocity and speed.  But while the incarceration, forced sterilisation and enslavement of millions of Uyghurs is increasingly recognised as a genocide, and the dismantling of Hong Kong’s promised

China has taken control of Hong Kong’s legislature

Hong Kong’s legislature has today moved one step closer to becoming a local branch of the Chinese Communist Party, after the disqualification of four of the most moderate, mainstream pro-democracy legislators resulted in the resignation en masse of every single pro-democracy legislator in protest. For the first time since 1997 the body now has no

Hong Kong’s ‘one country, two systems’ is over

The Chinese Communist party made an announcement yesterday which effectively ends ‘one country, two systems’ in Hong Kong, and in so doing launched a brazen assault on the international rules-based order. They have also dramatically changed the very nature and way of life of the city which was once my home. Over the past six

How coronavirus can save Hong Kong

The coronavirus has enforced a hiatus in Hong Kong’s widespread political unrest with worries about transmission stalling protests. Dissatisfaction with the government still festers, fuelled by the mishandling of the health crisis – all the ingredients are there for protests to reignite. But the lull in the unrest gives the Hong Kong government and their

How Boris Johnson should deal with China

Boris Johnson now has a hefty majority in Parliament. He can reshape Britain. He can redefine the Conservative party. And he can – to use a well-worn phrase – ‘get Brexit done’. Which also means that after more than three years of being engulfed with Brexit, the government can now begin to turn its attention to

Britain’s failure to speak out for Hong Kong

Today in Westminster Abbey, Britain will remember the life of one of our most inspirational, colourful and remarkable political leaders: Paddy Ashdown. As we do, I know he would want us to remember our responsibilities to Hong Kong, a cause close to his heart. Paddy lived in Hong Kong from 1967 to 1970 while in

Hong Kong’s first political asylum seekers

Hong Kong’s freedoms, autonomy and rule of law face ever-increasing threats, but there is a twin set of legal dangers that pose the most serious risks for the city’s way of life: an old colonial law that needs reform, and a new law that should never be introduced. Last week, two Hong Kong activists, Ray

It’s time for the UK to stand up to China over Hong Kong

Today’s conviction of nine leaders of the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement on charges including ‘incitement to public nuisance’, ‘incitement to incite public nuisance’ and ‘conspiracy to public nuisance’ is, in itself, one of the biggest public nuisances in Hong Kong in recent years. And the verdict is yet another hammer blow to Hong Kong’s rapidly