A young, pro-democracy protester has fled Hong Kong to seek asylum in the United Kingdom. According to reports, the 15-year-old girl, who goes by the alias Aurora, is the youngest known protester to have gone into exile.
Aurora revealed that although she had been arrested by police for participating in the protest, she was able to escape charges since she is not yet 16. The UK government confirmed that it is providing her with assistance and helping her find a suitable place to stay.
So why did this young girl choose to leave her life in Hong Kong and go into exile in a foreign country?
According to Aurora, if she had continued to stay in Hong Kong, her situation would have only become increasingly dangerous. She said that after police took her statement and released her, she was followed by unknown individuals. She felt she had no choice but to leave Hong Kong because she knew the police would eventually get even with her. Aurora believes that to remain in Hong Kong would be the same as awaiting her own death.
Aurora is also known for being the girlfriend of Tsang Chi-kin, a student protester who was shot by police in the protest against the unpopular extradition to China bill. Aurora said she first met Tsang on the front-lines during the anti-extradition protest. She and Tsang began dating and were happy together, she said, but they were soon both facing hardship.
On October 1, 2019, Tsang, a high school student, was participating in a protest in the Tsuen Wan district of Hong Kong when police began firing dozens of rounds of tear gas into the crowd of peaceful protesters. Police then fired live rounds, hitting Tsang in the chest at close range. Tsang was seriously injured, but managed to survive. He is now being charged by the Hong Kong government with one count of rioting and two counts of assaulting police. He initially pled guilty and was immediately detained by police, but his case is due to be heard again in mid-December.
Apple Daily reported on December 14, 2020, that Tsang’s girlfriend had fled to the United Kingdom during the prior week in order to seek political asylum. Aurora said she was reluctant and sad to leave Hong Kong without having the chance to see Tsang one last time.
An organization in London called Friends of Hong Kong, which was formed to support and uphold the values and interests of the Hong Kong people, is now looking into helping those who are seeking exile in the UK. Aurora said she intends to join the group in the future and help them bring international attention to the victims who are being falsely charged with crimes in Hong Kong.
The Chinese communist regime continues to actively suppress pro-democracy protesters, including those trying to enter the U.S. consulate in Hong Kong to seek asylum.
A spokesperson for Friends of Hong Kong said he had learned of Aurora’s arrival in the UK and stated they will provide the support she needs. This support will include psychological counseling, since Aurora is now suffering from depression.
Former Hong Kong Legislative Council member Xu Zhifeng, who is also in exile in the UK, said the young girl is now in a sorrowful situation. Xu said the Chinese communist regime has broken up many families and wrecked many lives. Xu said that he will provide as much assistance as he can to Aurora and others fleeing Hong Kong.
Translated by Chew and edited by Tatiana