Hongkongers queued at city news stands before dawn on Friday to buy the latest edition of the Apple Daily newspaper, a day after national security police arrested its editor-in-chief and four other directors. On Thursday morning hundreds of officers from the Hong Kong police national security department raided the homes of the employees, including editor-in-chef Ryan Law, and the Apple Daily newsroom for the second time in less than a year. It froze millions of dollars in company assets.
Police said the raid and arrests weredue to alleged breaches of the national security law’s clause against foreign collusion, via more than 30 articles calling for international sanctions against Hong Kong and China. Media and rights groups said authorities were using the law to crackdown on a vocal critic. The paper’s staff rejected the accusations against them, and vowed to get the paper out regardless, emblazoning the front page with photos of their five arrested bosses, and the headline: “National security police searched Apple, arrested five people, seized 44 news material hard disks.”