China can claim global leadership mantle but fails to win friends or admirers

To listen to Chinese President Xi Jinping, who delivered a New Year’s address to the nation last week, China has emerged triumphant from the severe challenges of 2020 while the rest of the world, especially the Western democratic world, has suffered dearly from the ravages of Covid-19. And there was certainly much for him to […]

In Pictures: Chengdu – China’s permissive ‘gay capital’ refusing to fold

By Helen Roxburgh It’s Saturday night at the HUNK club in Chengdu and men in gold lycra shorts and black boots dance on stage. They wear kimonos, in an apparent tactical compromise with new morality codes creeping into China’s “gay capital”. But across town, young women still lounge on leather sofas drinking beer at a […]


End of Hong Kong’s ‘one country, two systems’ poses fresh challenges for Joe Biden

By Niki JP Alsford Opposition is not welcome here. This was the clear message given to the people of Hong Kong following the expulsion of four MPs from the Hong Kong parliament on November 11 for their “unpatriotic” activities and “endangering national security”. The remaining 19 opposition MPs submitted their letters of resignation the following […]

With Hong Kong’s democrats gone, why not get rid of the rubber-stamp legislature altogether?

Pity the pan-democrats no longer sitting in what has, as of this week, become a rubber-stamp Legislative Council (Legco). When the administration of Chief Executive Carrie Lam used Covid-19 as an excuse to postpone the September elections – in which pro-establishment lawmakers were poised to take a beating – most of Legco’s 22 pan-dems, despite […]


EXCLUSIVE: China expert Jerome Cohen – ‘We can’t give up… when Xi leaves the scene, there will be a return to a better life’

Professor Jerome Cohen – widely respected as the world’s top China law expert – was once feted as “a friend of China” who advocated US engagement with the country amid Cold War hostilities back in the 1960s. These days, the outspoken critic of China’s human rights abuses and Hong Kong’s looming national security law, is […]

Exclusive: Cartoonist Badiucao says satire is the ‘temporary aspirin’ that can heal Hong Kong’s protest trauma

Chinese-Australian artist Badiucao has told HKFP that the power of political satire comes from deconstructing authority and it can act as a “temporary painkiller” for Hongkongers traumatised by the ongoing pro-democracy protests. In an exclusive live-streamed interview, the cartoonist shared his thoughts on the role of art in social movements and spoke of how humour […]


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