'I have a message for those who would try to silence my calls for freedom and democracy in Hong Kong: I will not be bullied or silenced,' Curtis said
WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative John Curtis and four other members of Congress have been named in a petition filed to Hong Kong’s High Court that calls for their arrest if they are found in the city.
The petition requests an order for the arrest of Rep. Curtis; Rep. Young Kim of California; Rep. James McGovern of Massachusetts; Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska; and Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon.
A number of bills related to Hong Kong and the Chinese Communist Party have been introduced by Curtis, who represents Utah’s 3rd Congressional District, which encompasses all of Wasatch County and parts of Summit County, including Park City.
The petition for the members of Congress’s arrest comes after the bipartisan group introduced companion legislation in the House and Senate that would impose financial sanctions on 49 Hong Kong government officials, law enforcement officers, judges, and prosecutors in response to alleged human rights violations perpetrated by the Hong Kong judiciary following the implementation of restrictive national security laws by the Chinese Communist Party since 2019.
“I have watched the last few years as freedoms in Hong Kong have been dismantled,” Curtis wrote on X (formerly Twitter). “Now, pro-CCP lawmakers are calling for the citizen arrests of me and my Congressional colleagues for shining a light on the deterioration of rights.”
Curtis introduced the Hong Kong Safe Harbor Act in 2020, attempting to make the process for Hong Kong refugees seeking asylum in the U.S. easier.
In addition to the legislation proposed in 2020, Curtis also introduced the Hong Kong Business Integrity and Transparency Act in 2022 and 2023, a legislative measure designed to track and record every instance where Hong Kong authorities compel U.S. companies to disclose sensitive data or collaborate in government-related activities.
“I have a message for those who would try to silence my calls for freedom and democracy in Hong Kong: I will not be bullied or silenced,” Curtis wrote. “Your cat calls from 8,000 miles away will only reinforce my resolve to fight for freedom in Hong Kong, Ukraine, Israel, and wherever else it is challenged.”
If the Hong Kong officials named in the bill introduced by Curtis and his colleagues earlier this month are found to have violated human rights law, the bill would mandate that President Joe Biden impose sanctions on them.
“Calls for my arrest by a pro-Beijing lawyer for leading the bipartisan, bicameral charge to support Hong Kongers must mean I’m doing something right,” Rep. Kim said on X. “I will keep using my voice to fight for freedom & democracy for those trapped and tortured under the Chinese Communist Party authoritarian regime.”