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Shen Yun Show’s Hong Kong Cancellation Causes Outcry

Posted by Author on February 1, 2010

NTD TV, Jan 29, 2010-

New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts had scheduled seven shows in Hong Kong, from January 27 to 31. And all the tickets were sold out. But after Hong Kong’s Immigration Department denied the visas for some of the technical staff, the show had to be cancelled last minute.

Hong Kong resident Mr. Yuen was looking forward to seeing Shen Yun after reading magazine articles about it. He says he wants his government to explain why they denied the visas.

[Mr. Yuen, Hong Kong Resident]:
“This show is popular worldwide and attractive, yet we could not see our Chinese performance in our own Hong Kong, [or in] mainland [China]. I feel baffled.”

Another member of the public accused the Hong Kong government of bowing to pressure from the Chinese Communist Party.

[Mr. Chen, Hong Kong Resident]:
“Now the Hong Kong government is owned by the CCP. It’s a puppet controlled by a string behind it. I felt it’s most unfortunate that we cannot see the show. Hong Kong people are very unfortunate. Why can’t we see this world-class show?”

Across the Taiwan Strait, the President of the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy says Hong Kong has a history of bowing to the Chinese regime. He says the visa denials will bring damage to Hong Kong’s international image.

[Lin Wen-Cheng, President, Taiwan Foundation for Democracy]:
“Such a decision to cancel a cultural event is very disappointing. For Hong Kong, it will have a negative impact on its image internationally, as well as bring harm to Hong Kong people’s freedom of speech.”

Taiwan political commentator Lin Bao-hua also believes the Chinese regime is responsible for the visa denials.

[Lin Bao-hua, Taiwan Political Commentator]:

“Without the directives from Beijing, the Hong Kong government would not do such a thing. Therefore this incident in itself shows that Hong Kong’s position in the ‘one country two party’ system is wavering more and more.”

Chinese authorities have tried to stop Shen Yun’s performances in many cities around the world. One case made headlines in 2008 when a cultural department official in Linkoping, Sweden received a threatening phone call from a representative of the Chinese Embassy. The Embassy told the Swedish official to either cancel the Shen Yun shows or their countries’ relationship would be affected.

In light of that, Swedish Parliament Member Cecilia Wigström spoke about the Shen Yun incident in Hong Kong.

[Cecilia Wigström, Swedish MP]:

“This also raises questions about freedom in Hong Kong. It’s very important for the people living in Hong Kong—I know that they have bravely many times really fought for their rights—to uphold their freedoms also after Hong Kong was reunited with China. And I think it’s very important that the Hong Kong people know that we in other countries support their continued, obviously their need for a continued struggle to uphold their rights.”


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