Veteran Hong Kong activist Szeto Wah dies

2009 file picture of pro-democracy leader Szeto Wah at a rally in Hong Kong Mr Szeto was a well-known critic of the Chinese regime

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One of Hong Kong's most influential campaigners for democracy and human rights, Szeto Wah, has died after a long battle with cancer, aged 79.

He was a leading campaigner for the victims of Beijing's 1989 crackdown on protesters at Tiananmen Square.

Known as Uncle Wah, he was also a voice for mainland dissidents jailed by the Chinese government.

Originally a teacher, he started his political career as a leader of one Hong Kong's largest teachers' unions.

Along with others, he organised the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Democratic Movements in China, which he headed until his death, and which routinely criticised Beijing for human-rights abuses.

A core member of the leading Democratic Party, he served as a legislator for almost 20 years.

The chief executive of Hong Kong, Donald Tsang, said Mr Szeto would be "dearly missed".

"Passionate about China and Hong Kong, Mr Szeto Wah was devoted in promoting democracy. Upright, industrious and unwavering in the pursuit of his ideals, Mr Szeto earned great respect from across the community," he said.

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