Hong Kong’s Lamb escapes from honorary role at Cambridge University in the UK

LONDON / HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam has been awarded an honorary doctorate by a college at the University of Cambridge, after committing herself to the protection of human rights and freedom of expression in put doubt.

PHOTO PHOTO: Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam attends a news conference prior to national security legislation, in Hong Kong, China June 30, 2020. REUTERS / Tyrone Siu

Lam said the allegations made by Wolfson College were “baseless” and said she was “deeply disappointed by the college smearing a person on the basis of hearsay instead of facts”.

“I can not convince myself to continue with a connection to Wolfson College and therefore decided to return the honorary scholarship,” Lam said in a statement on Facebook on Saturday.

She accused British politicians – whom she did not name – of being behind the movement.

Relations between Britain and China have rapidly deteriorated after London accused Beijing and its new security law of violating the 1984 Joint Declaration that anchored Hong Kong’s autonomy.

Introduction of the law required London to provide some 3 million inhabitants in the former colony with a path to British citizenship.

China – once condemned as a leading source of investment in Britain – has accused London of major interference and pandering to the United States.

Wolfson College said in July that it was deeply concerned about events in Hong Kong and said it would consider Lam’s position as an honorary fellow, assigning a role to individuals to honor an outstanding contribution in a specific field.

It said on Sunday: “The governing body has expressed concern with Mrs Carrie Lam about her commitment to the protection of human rights and freedom of expression in Hong Kong following recent events there.

“In response, Ms. Lam resigned from her Honor Fellowship.”

The United States has imposed sanctions on Lam and other officials for what Washington says is its role in curtailing political freedoms in Hong Kong.

Report by Kate Holton and Marius Zaharia; Edited by Susan Fenton

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