This research study examines the restrictions on the right to freedom of assembly in Hong Kong with particular emphasis on the ruling in Leung Kwok Hung and its importance to the rationale for restricting freedom of assembly. A comparative analysis is conducted with reference to Hong Kong’s case law and international jurisprudence relative to freedom of assembly. This study is therefore divided into two main parts. The first part of the paper will examine Hong Kong’s freedom of assembly regime and the second part of the paper will examine the international jurisprudence on freedom of assembly.
Hong Kong’s Freedom of Assembly Law
The Sino-UK Joint Declaration of 1984 which provided for the transfer of Hong Kong to the People’s Republic of China (PRC or China) contained an undertaking to maintain the pre-existing fundamental human rights including freedom of assembly. China implemented the Basic Law 1997 which reflected its undertaking under the Joint Declaration of 1984 to maintain a one country, two system framework with respect to its sovereignty over Hong Kong. This meant that Hong Kong could continue to adhere to the laws in place at the time of the handover. Shortly after the handover of Hong Kong however, China reneged on some of its key guarantees under the Joint Declaration and among its broken promises, announced that there would be restrictions on a number of freedoms including freedom of assembly. ...