Hong Kong’s district councillors take oath of loyalty in closed-door ceremony

The first group of district councillors has pledged allegiance to Hong Kong. 24 have taken part in the closed-door ceremony, while one has been removed from office for not turning up. The oath-taking is a new requirement by the government to align local legislation with the national security law. The relationship between councillors and officials deteriorated rapidly after the 2019 elections, when the opposition camp swept 17 out of the 18 district councils, following months of anti-government protests. The next district council election is to be held in 2023.

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Japan PM warns of closed-door Olympics as COVID-19 cases rise

A warning that the Tokyo Olympics could be held behind closed doors. Organisers are said to be considering banning all spectators from night-time events and from big venues. Japan Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said action could be taken if the COVID-19 situation deteriorates. Experts believe the new surge in cases will spread further than the fourth wave, and have warned that cases in Tokyo could reach up to 2,000 a day. A large proportion of new infections are linked to the highly infectious Delta variant.

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Canadian in closed-door trial for spying in China

The trial of Michael Kovrig, who has been held in China for more than two years on espionage charges, began in a closed Beijing courtroom, days after the United States raised concerns over his case at tense talks with China in Alaska.

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