Cardinal Joseph Zen has been arrested in Hong Kong. According to Asia News, the prelate was arrested in connection with an investigation into the 612 Humanitarian Relief Fund, which helped people involved in the 2019 protests. Also, more trustees of the charity have also been detained. They are charged with collusion with foreign forces, an offence punishable under a national security law.
Hong Kong police took into custody Card Joseph Zen Ze-kiun. He is a well-known supporter of the local pro-democracy movement. The decision to arrest Hong Kong’s 90-year-old bishop emeritus is due to his connection with the 612 Humanitarian Relief Fund. The fund helped thousands of pro-democracy protesters until it was shut down last October. The authorities also arrested barrister Margaret Ng, cultural studies scholar Hui Po-keung, and singer-songwriter Denise Ho. They are presumed to have violated of the law on national security imposed by Beijing in the summer of 2020. Card Zen has long been in opposition to the Chinese government. In January, Hong Kong’s pro-Beijing press published four articles accusing him of inciting students to rise up against a series of government measures in 2019. Card. Zen criticized the removal of external crosses from churches in mainland China and for years celebrated Masses in remembrance of the young martyrs of Tiananmen Square slaughtered by the authorities in Beijing on 4 June 1989 for demanding freedom and democracy. The cardinal has also opposed the agreement between the Vatican and China on the appointment of bishops. He has often attended the trials of people arrested on political charges as well as pro-democracy activists jailed for violating the national security legislation. (Edited from AsiaNews)