HK suspends operation of its representative office in TaiwanLocal | 18 May 2021 1:21 pm
Hong Kong's representative office in Taiwan has temporarily suspended operations, a Hong Kong government spokesman said on Tuesday, adding only that the decision was not related to the rise in coronavirus cases there, Reuters reports.
Tensions between the Beijing-backed Hong Kong government and Taiwan have risen since pro-democracy protests erupted in Hong Kong in 2019 and China imposed a sweeping national security law last year to quell the unrest, prompting many activists to leave the city.
Taipei has criticized the law and opened a local office to help people who may want to leave Hong Kong.
Last year, Taiwanese officials in Hong Kong were told their visas would not be renewed unless they signed a document supporting Beijing's claim to Taiwan under its "one China" policy, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
The government today make the announcement to suspend its Hong Kong Economic, Trade and Cultural Office in Taiwan without providing an explanation.
The government spokesman said the government will continue to handle general enquiries and requests for assistance made by Hong Kong residents in Taiwan, as well as provide Taiwan residents with information related to Hong Kong, through the hotline services of 1823 and 1868, and the GovHK website.
"The suspension is not related to the pandemic situation in Taiwan. We do not have anything further to add," the spokesman added.
Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council said it was working on a response on the matter.