US pours mystery millions into HK groups

December 1, 2010 — Leave a comment

The United States has been pouring money into Hong Kong to strengthen political parties and civil agencies, according to WikiLeaks.

But the local Democratic Party says it hasn’t received a cent, while the Civic Party says it is always cautious about donations from external parties.

A Congressional Research Service report says the US State Department’s Human Rights and Democracy Fund set aside US$450,000 (HK$3.49 million) in 2006 to fund a project in Hong Kong designed to strengthen political parties and civil society organizations.

It added Congress appropriated US$15 million for democracy and rule of law programs in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan – though no specific amount was allocated to Hong Kong. The report is dated January 10, 2008.

Democratic Party legislator Cheung Man-kwong said: “The Democratic Party has never received any donation from other countries and will never accept it. We only accept donations from local residents and groups.”

Civic Party vice chairman Albert Lai Kwong-tak said he has never heard of any such project. Chinese University associate professor Ma Ngok said the United States often holds seminars and activities to promote democracy in Hong Kong.

The Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau said it will look into the report.

 

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