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World News: Nine Hong Kong activists get 6-10 months in prison for unauthorised Tiananmen vigil Updated: 2021-09-16 09:32:10 KST

Let's take a look at what's going on in 'The World Now'.

We start off in Hong Kong, where nine Hong Kong pro-democracy activists on Wednesday were sentenced to six to ten months in prison for their role in an unauthorized assembly at last year's vigil for the victims of China's 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown on protestors.
Three other activists received suspended sentences, as all 12 including former lawmaker Eddie Chu and Figo Chan, a former leader of the Civil Human Rights Front, known for organizing mass pro-democracy rallies, pleaded guilty to their charges.
According to one activist, such actions will become the new norm.

"The new normal now emerging is that pro-democracy activists continue to be prosecuted after being arrested, have new charges added for them, and their past behaviors raked up. I think the government continues to suppress our basic human rights and suppress different groups, such as our League of Social Democrats."

While the last two Tiananmen vigils were banned by police due to COVID-19 restrictions on public gatherings, the ban is also seen by many activists as an attempt to shut down any display of defiance to Beijing.
However, despite the ban, thousands turned to lighting candles across the city last year, while smaller crowds did the same in 2021.

Over in the U.S.,.. gymnasts who suffered abuse at the hands of disgraced former team doctor Larry Nassar testified before the Senate on Wednesday.
Among those to speak was Simone Biles who blamed 'the system' that enabled the abuse to happen.

"To be clear, I blame Larry Nassar and I also blame an entire system that enabled and perpetrated his abuse."

In the highly emotional testimony, the four women told the Senate Judiciary Committee, that they had "suffered and continue to suffer" from the abuse they experienced, as well as from the mishandling of the case.
McKayla Maroney, who won gold at the 2012 London Games, described the experience of being interviewed by the FBI as replete with "silence and disregard" for her trauma, adding that the FBI chose to fabricate and lie about what she said, to protect a serial child molester.
The four were among more than 150 women who gave statements against Larry Nassar's abuse in a 2018 case, where the former team doctor was accused of sexual abuse against more than 330 women and girls.
Nassar was sentenced up to 175 years after pleading guilty to seven counts of criminal sexual conduct.

And finally over to Pakistan, where players from Afghanistan's female youth football teams arrived on Wednesday, ahead of seeking political asylum in a third country, amid concerns over the status of female athletes under the new Taliban government.
Some 81 Afghans, including players of several youth teams, as well as their coaches and family members reached Pakistan through the Torkham border crossing.
The escape was made possible by the Football for Peace international organization.
34 others will arrive on Thursday,.. as they will stay in Pakistan under tight security before applying for asylum in third countries.
Lee Seung-jae, Arirang News.

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