Thousands of Hong Kongers have already applied to a new UK visa scheme opened at the end of January in response to the Chinese Communist Party’s crackdown on democracy and personal liberty in the former British Crown Colony.
Nearly 5,000 Hong Kongers have applied for visas since the new immigration route was opened on January 31st, according to The Times, with experts estimating total application could hit 145,000 by the end of the year if the current rate is maintained.
Initially open to Hong Kongers holding British National Overseas (BNO) citizenship — a relic of the Cantonese-speaking Special Administrative Region’s long years as a part of the British Empire, before the UK transferred it to the communist regime in Beijing (Peking) in 1997. Nearly 25 years later, many Hong Kongers retain a strong sense of affinity with Britain, especially as Chinese repression and state interference has increased.
In time, the scheme will