Civil Society

“Checks and balances” absent in Hong Kong police force, superiors allegedly turn a blind eye on errant police officers

Torture in police detention, acts of unprecedented violence and brutal tactics are among some of the signs of the Hong Kong police force’s brutality against pro-democracy protesters. Riot police officers have been known to deploy tear gas, pepper spray, rubber bullets and water cannons against protesters during clashes since June, and up to as recently as early this month. Some …

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China foreign ministry lambasts US Senate’s passing of “Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy” bill, citing interference in China’s internal affairs

The People’s Republic of China’s foreign ministry has strongly criticised the United States, following the Senate’s passing of a bill that supports the pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong. Geng Shuang, a spokesperson from the ministry, said in a statement on Wed (20 Nov) that China “strongly condemns and opposes” the “Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act”, and that the …

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Hong Kong DBS branch vandalised with graffiti containing vulgarities against PM Lee and PAP, graffiti removed upon discovery

A DBS Bank branch in Hong Kong was vandalised with vulgarities aimed at Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, his family and the People’s Action Party (PAP). The Straits Times reported on Fri (15 Nov) a spokesperson for the Singapore bank as saying that the graffiti was removed upon discovery yesterday. Photos of the graffiti had first surfaced in a Facebook group …

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AWARE breaks fundraising record with $600,000 in donations at Time Traveller’s Ball

For its annual gala on Saturday, 2 November, gender-equality group AWARE set its fundraising target at $500,000. The total amount raised—around $600,000 in all—amply exceeded that goal. The amount is the largest sum ever raised by the 34-year-old organisation through a single event. Entitled the Time Traveller’s Ball, with a “Back to the Future” theme evoking both past victories and …

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High Court dismisses Jolovan Wham’s appeal against conviction for organising assembly without permit, refusal to sign police statement

The High Court today dismissed both appeals made by civil rights activist Jolovan Wham against his conviction for organising a public assembly without a permit and for refusing to sign a police statement. In a written judgement on Fri (25 Oct), Justice Chua Lee Ming rejected Wham’s counsel Eugene Thuraisingam’s argument that the event, titled “Civil Disobedience and Social Movements”, …

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Govt “should re-evaluate” viewpoint on dissent and activism, youths must be given greater room to participate: Anthea Ong

The Government “should re-evaluate” its viewpoint on “advocacy, activism and dissent”, particularly concerning discourse among Singapore’s youths and their involvement in activism and advocacy, said Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP) Anthea Ong in Parliament on Mon (7 Oct). Following up on fellow NMP Walter Theseira’s comments during an adjournment motion titled “A Liberal Education and Corruption of the Youth of …

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Yale-NUS criticised for allegedly scapegoating playwright Alfian Sa’at over programme cancellation

Yale-NUS College’s cancellation of the “Dissent and Resistance in Singapore” programme has attracted much controversy and criticism from academicians, as well as practitioners in media and the arts. The programme, which has been since renamed “Dialogue and Dissent in Singapore”, was scheduled to be run by Alfian and programme manager Tan Yock Theng of NUS. It was originally slated to …

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Playwright Alfian Sa’at “a loving critic” of S’pore, freedom of speech includes right to disagree with govt: Veteran diplomat Tommy Koh

Local playwright Alfian Sa’at is “a loving critic of Singapore” and “one of our most talented playwrights”, said veteran diplomat Tommy Koh. In a Facebook post on Tue (8 Oct), Prof Koh stressed that Alfian “is not anti-Singapore”, adding that freedom of speech should not only be limited to views that concur with the establishment, but also those that are …

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Hong Kong protestors arrested for defying mask ban make court appearance

by Jerome TAYLOR / Pak YIU Hong Kong democracy protesters arrested for defying a new face mask ban appeared in court on Monday following a violent weekend of unrest which saw bloody clashes with police and widespread vandalism that crippled the city’s train network. The international finance hub convulsed with three straight days of rallies and riots after the city’s …

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