Hong Kong makes mocking China's anthem a crime on Tiananmen anniversary

The move adds to fears that the space in Hong Kong for speech critical of Beijing will continue to shrink, as China’s ruling Communist Party tightens its control over the semiautonomous city after a year of antigovernment protests.

For the first time ever, the local authorities have banned the annual vigil in Hong Kong to remember the victims of the Tiananmen killings in 1989, though activists said they would gather regardless. Hong Kong, which has far greater civil liberties than mainland China, has always been the most important site for public commemoration of the June 4 massacre, and the only large-scale one on Chinese soil…

Hong Kong’s legislature, which is dominated by pro-Beijing lawmakers, passed a separate piece of legislation on Thursday that would criminalize disrespect for China’s national anthem and make it punishable by up to three years in prison. On Thursday, several opposition lawmakers disrupted the debate by throwing stink bombs inside the legislative chamber and yelling: “A murderous regime stinks for 10,000 years.”