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Hong Kong protests

US bill grants refugee status to Hong Kong protesters

Lawmakers introduce bipartisan legislation following UK offer of citizenship

Joshua Wong greets Reps. Thomas Souzzi (D-NY) and Jim McGovern (D-MA) before testifying at a Congressional-Executive Commission on China hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington in September 2019.    © Reuters

NEW YORK -- U.S. lawmakers introduced a bipartisan bill on Wednesday that would give refugee status to Hong Kongers fearing political persecution from Beijing, after China enacted a mainland-style national security law in the former British colony.

The Hong Kong Safe Harbor Act, introduced in both chambers of the U.S. Congress, would grant Priority 2 Refugee status to Hong Kongers "who peacefully protested Beijing's corrupt justice system, and have a well-founded fear of persecution," its sponsors said in a news release. There will be no limit to the number of Hong Kong residents who qualify.

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