The arrests of more than a dozen prominent figures in the democracy camp in Hong Kong signal Beijing’s unyielding stance on national security and have triggered warnings from pan-democrats that the peace that the city recently regained could be shattered.

Political observers contacted by The Sunday Times believe the arrests may be linked to the Legislative Council (Legco) election expected in early September, but noted that the bottom line is that Beijing continues to take a hard line towards Hong Kong.

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