Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Karen Yu’s (余宛如) application for a Hong Kong entry visa was refused on Sept. 24, making her the third DPP legislator to be denied entry into the city since August.

Yu was invited to the 2016 Social Enterprise World Forum (SEWF) held in Hong Kong Sept. 25-27 as one of the speakers. The legislator applied for a visa two weeks ago but was informed today that the application was turned down.

The legislator participated in the 2015 Milan SEWF and 2014 Seoul SEWF. Yu says she is sorry she could not take part in the event this year to share Taiwan’s social enterprise experience with the world, the Chinese-language Apple Daily reported.

Yu’s name is still on the speakers’ list and the SEWF has yet to make any comment.

DPP Legislator Chiu Chih-wei (邱志偉) was denied entry into Hong Kong on on Aug. 3 when he attempted to enter the city after a typhoon hit during his transfer to Tokyo. Neither the airport nor any official gave him a reason why his application was denied. Chiu called the Chinese government “absurd and stingy” and added he “didn’t have the strength to comment on this ridiculous sovereignty.”

On Aug. 23, DPP Legislator Kuo Cheng-liang (郭正亮) along with former Kuomingtang (KMT) spokesperson Yang Wei-chung (楊偉中) and Mainland Affairs Council advisory committee member Fan Shih-ping (范世平) were denied visas after being invited to a cross-Strait relations forum in Hong Kong. The three were informed that their applications were cancelled due to their connections with the government in Taipei.

▶︎ See also: "Hong Kong No Longer Has Autonomy on Immigration"

The Hong Kong Immigration Department told the Apple Daily it will not comment on individual cases and that visa applications are evaluated based on the city's current immigration policy.

Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council Minister Katherine Chang (張小月) told CNA today that the action taken by the Hong Kong government is “irrational and unnecessary.” Chang said she believes the Hong Kong government should not be pressured by Beijing and that people should have the right to travel freely. Chang said she will let the Hong Kong government know that she is “extremely discontent" with the decision.

Chang also said that the action will not benefit cross-Strait relations at all, adding that continuing oppression from China will only make Taiwanese oppose the Chinese government even more. Chang urged China to rethink its stance and attitude for future cross-Strait relations.

First Editor: Olivia Yang
Second Editor: Edward White