Hong Kong police on Sunday accused 47 former democracy activists of plotting to subvert state power under a draconian national security law imposed by China last year.
The 47 people charged on Sunday were among more than 50 people arrested in January. The arrests sparked outrage in the West, with governments accusing Beijing of violating the Sino-British Joint Declaration that underpinned the transfer of sovereignty over Hong Kong from the UK to China.
In a statement, the EU condemned the accusations, calling them “very worrying”.
“The nature of these accusations clearly shows that legitimate political pluralism will no longer be tolerated in Hong Kong,” Nabila Massrali, a spokesperson for the European Commission, said in the statement.
“The EU urges the authorities in Hong Kong and Beijing to respect their commitments to fundamental freedoms and the rule of law, as enshrined in the Basic Law and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The EU calls for the immediate release of those arrested, ”the statement read.
Stuart Lau contributed reporting.