President to visit HK bookstore, discuss national security law

President Tsai Ing-wen is set to visit the Causeway Bay Books at 11:20 a.m. Friday and is expected to talk about the recent HK issues.(CNA)

TAIPEI (The China Post) — President Tsai Ing-wen is set to visit the Causeway Bay Books at 11:20 a.m. Friday, a short visit during which she is expected to talk about the recent HK issues.

Causeway Bay Books, a bookstore originally based in Hong Kong selling books critical of Beijing and Chinese political leadership, reopened in Taiwan on April 25, 2020, 20 months after it was closed due to political persecution.

The bookstore, situated on the 10th floor of a commercial building near Taipei’s MRT Zhongshan Station, has an area of only 66 square meters but with a wide range of book selections, from coloring books for children to volumes tackling politics, some of which are forbidden in China.

It sells books on Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement in 2019 and on the situation in Tibet.

Lam Wing-kee (林榮基), the founder of Causeway Bay Books in Hong Kong, thanked Taiwan’s government and the Taiwanese people for helping him to resurrect the store.

Causeway Bay Books, a bookstore originally based in Hong Kong selling books critical of Beijing and Chinese political leadership,  reopened in Taiwan on April 25, 2020, 20 months after it was closed due to political persecution.(CNA)

“Taiwan is the last bastion for the Hong Kong people. It gives shelter and hope to the Hong Kong people,” Lam said.

In late October 2015, five people, including Lam and the owner and staff of Causeway Bay Books, were arrested in Hong Kong and mainland China, triggering a public outcry and questioning the authorities’ cross-border enforcement. 

Lim was detained in mainland China for nearly eight months until June 2016, when he was allowed to return to Hong Kong in exchange for surveillance officers.

The Causeway Bay Bookshop was founded in 1994 by Lam, who specialized in literature and fiction at the time.

In those days, politically sensitive books about mainland China began to flourish in both Taiwan and Hong Kong. With the implementation of the Individual Visit Scheme (IVS) in 2003, the Causeway Bay Books began selling these controversial books, but the publishing industry had been in decline at the time.

Therefore, in 2014, it was sold to Chuliu Publisher, a publisher of political gossip, and Lam was hired as the store manager.

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